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National Security (2003)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Comedy, Crime  |  17 January 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.5/10 from 36,962 users   Metascore: 31/100
Reviews: 142 user | 50 critic | 25 from

Two mismatched security guards are thrown together to bust a smuggling operation.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Charlie Reed
Robert Barton
Woman in Car
Booking Clerk
Hank's Lawyer
Billy Narthax
Owen Fergus


Earl and Hank have only one thing in common: they're both L.A.P.D. rejects. One just got kicked out, the other can't even get in. After confronting each other on opposite sides of the law during a traffic stop that escalates out of control, these two luckless individuals end up partnered as lowly security guards. Despite being damned to the lowest rung of the law enforcement ladder, Earl and Hank uncover a sophisticated smuggling operation led by Nash and his band of thugs. When Earl and Hank get their hands on some hot property, they go on the run from, first the bad guys, then the L.A.P.D.--led by Lt. Washington and Detective McDuff. What these two unlikely partners do to law enforcement is a crime, but they just might save the day. That is, if they don't kill each other first. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They only look like cops. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, language and some sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 January 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Segurança Nacional  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$16,813,517 (USA) (17 January 2003)


$901,698 (South Africa) (30 May 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


DVD has alternate ending. See more »


In the scene where Earl jumps the police car through the house at the LAPD Academy the car lands and the hub caps to the tires come off. When Earl jumps out of the car you can clearly see hub caps on the police car. See more »


[recurring line]
Earl: What the problem is?
See more »


References Planet of the Apes (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

It's lighthearted, fun and goofy --- I like it!
14 July 2003 | by (Nova Scotia, Canada) – See all my reviews

Martin Lawrence and Steve Zahn star in this funny comedy as two ill-fated security guards who team up to bring down a dangerous criminal organisation and a crooked cop. It may not be an excellent film, but it is a lighthearted, fairly fresh take on the classic "buddy cop" formula that's been used over and over again (Shanghai Noon, I Spy, etc...) This time, most of the laughs come from Lawrence, who does a good job of being the wise-assed, smart-mouthed partner as Steve Zahn does his stuff as the impatient lead character.

The plot of the film seems a bit rushed, and not developped to its extent, but that's no matter. What DOES matter are the laughs; and though "National Security" isn't the funniest film in the world, the comedy is sharp --- although, at times, it does seem a bit recycled. Come on, we've seen this sort of stuff WAY too many times before...

The point is, "National Security" provides some laughs and is an all-around good film, though not great. For those of you lookin' for a familiar, smile-inducing cop film, you can't go wrong with "National Security". I'm a bit put off, though --- a 4.3 rating for this flick is just way too low, and I don't think the film deserves the bad reviews it's been getting. The same thing seems to have happened to "I Spy" as well...

Come on, you guys need to lighten up. Of course these films aren't Shakespeare --- and they don't want to be! Sooner or later, you'll learn that a movie doesn't have to be perfect in order for it to be an enjoyable experience. Most movies don't aim to be Oscar-material, so they opt to bring to the general public the things we want from this sort of film: comedy, action, wise-cracks, and, if at all possible, a decent plot. We can't compare movies like these to, say, "Star Wars" or "Casablanca" or "Titanic", because they're in totally different leagues. I try to review each film while considering the different intentions of the producers. If a film is a clear Oscar contender, I may be a bit more harsh in my review --- but with most comedies and action pics, I give credit where credit is due.

And that's the moral of this story: GIVE CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE! "National Security" is a decent flick and is well worth the price of admission, at least in the eyes of this reviewer.

34 of 46 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Martin Lawrence is a Racist person Samuraiguy
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Why isnt steve zhan in the cover of the dvd ninjagaiden86
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