Kevin Smith was conveniently kicked off of a flight over the weekend, allowing everyone in America to read his name in a paper or on a blog just in time for his new film, "Cop Out," in theaters February 26.

I'm not saying he got kicked off the flight on purpose, but perhaps his subconscious allowed him to put on the few extra pounds it took to get a pilot all riled up. Smith has flown Southwest before and never had a problem. He is currently challenging the airline to prove that he was really a safety risk, which will cost them a $10,000 donation to charity, should they fail. I would get the corporate check book ready.

"Cop Out" is Smith's ninth film, but the first feature that he has not written. It was penned by Mark and Robb Cullen, known previously for failures such as FX's "Lucky" and SpikeTV's "Gary the Rat," each of which lasted one season. A show they created for NBC, "Heist," lasted for five episodes. What I'm trying to show here is that these guys don't have a very good track record. The trailer for "Cop Out," released with Christmas' "Sherlock Holmes," offered me no solace. It appeared to be a boringly typical buddy cop movie, which was especially annoying because after "Live Free or Die Hard," I thought Bruce Willis was back to making good action. The Seann William Scott scene seemed completely unnecessary and seemed to take up a minute of a trailer that was only two and a half minutes to begin with. Also, the change to "Cop Out" from "A Couple of Dicks" worried me. Was this going to be another "Zack and Miri" fiasco?

When I saw the red band trailer for the film, I was relieved. The dialogue appears to be typical Smith-fare, with plenty of sex jokes and dirty words. Bruce Willis' character is not as uptight as the "green" trailer would lead you to believe, and Tracy Morgan is as foul-mouthed as you may have expected, but not heard. I'm still slightly concerned about Morgan being kicked in the crotch and the Seann William Scott sequence, which looks tedious. If a scene feels too long in the trailer, it's going to be even worse in the film. And crotch shots? I thought Smith would be above that.

Tracy Morgan, Seann William Scott and Bruce Willis in 'Cop Out' © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Of course, when I heard the Smith was returning to the well and making "Clerks II" (with the gorgeous Rosario Dawson playing Dante's love interest no less), I thought he had gone completely off his rocker. But "Clerks II" ended up being my favorite Smith film to date, Bollywood-style dance sequence and all. "Cop Out" could be the same way--even "Zack and Miri Make a Porno" ended up having a tearjerker ending.

I often lump Kevin Smith in with directors like Joss Whedon--I can't imagine them directing something that they didn't write. I hope that Smith didn't just make this film for the paycheck and that his claim that the two characters are "Randal and Dante as cops" holds true. I hope that I laugh through the entire movie. I hope that after plunking down $10 for "Cop Out," I come out of the theater saying that I was wrong and that Kevin Smith is at the top of his game. But if not, "Red State" better figure out its money woes damn quick.

Story by Shawn Martin

Starpulse contributing writer