There are buddy comedies that work, there are buddy comedies that don’t, and Stuber is one that very much falls into the second category. Some of the most critical elements of a good buddy comedy are connection and chemistry because if you don’t connect with the characters, you don’t really care about them. Bottom line, if the characters don’t have chemistry, whatever else you pack in there isn’t going to work effectively, and the chemistry isn’t there on-screen. Both Dave Bautista and Kumail Nanjiani work with what they’ve got, but that’s not a lot and what they’ve got lacks spark.
Nanjiani plays Stuart (Stu for short), a lovelorn and generally mild-mannered Uber driver who picks up Vic, played by Bautista, a cop on the hunt for the bad guy who killed his partner. Vic can’t drive himself around LA as he’s had Lasik eye surgery earlier that day so can’t see correctly. As a result, Stu is thrust into a pursuit that takes him all over the city, not only putting him in the line of fire but it also means he can’t get to the recently single friend, and new Spin Cycle business partner, he is secretly in love with so they can have sex. On top of that, Stu has to make sure he does an excellent job so that his Uber rating doesn’t drop otherwise he’ll lose his job. It’s like if Speed swapped out the bomb and staying above 50 miles per hour for customer service feedback and a booty call with none of the tension.