Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
At the Movies:
James gives it everything he's got, totally committing to the character and delivering clean comedy which often times is often more difficult than creating just a raunch-fest.
New York Times:
Directed by Steve Carr, a man who knows how to put a camera in front of things, if little else, and written, sort of, by Nick Bakay and Mr. James.
To call this Kevin James comedy fatuous might be misinterpreted as an attack on the star's girth -- so how about inane, tepid, lazy, puerile, phony, and unfunny?
It's just not particularly funny. That Segway, alas, only goes so far.
A shamelessly sentimental comedy with a few crude gags thrown in arbitrarily.
Give this to Paul Blart: Mall Cop: It delivers on everything it promises. Which is to say, nearly nothing.
It's unlikely that even WALL-E could bring himself to scoop up this movie and leave it on his post-apocalyptic junk heap.
Los Angeles Times:
[The film] oo often settles for easy, lazy jokes, most of which revolve around either food or running into stuff.
Sensationally stupid, haphazardly made and qualifying as unmitigated trash by any standards, Paul Blart: Mall Cop also manages to be consistently hilarious, thanks to star Kevin James.
[Kevin James] proves to be a warm leading man who grounds the movie as it morphs into a loopy heist thriller after a promising start as something entirely different: a gentle comedy of suburban underachievement.
In places the plot sags a bit and some jokes don't quite hit their mark or tickle the funny bone as much as they're obviously meant to.
[James] plays yet another misfit, but one who's so two-dimensional, needy (and frankly annoying) that it's difficult to root for him.
This isn't brain surgery; this is daffy entertainment that plays to its strengths, with director Steve Carr trusting in James' deadpan earnesty
Luke Y. Thompson,
Somewhere beneath its mediocre comedic trappings, there's a decent action movie trying to fight its way free.
The thin comic appeal of Kevin James is laid on a bit thicker in Paul Blart: Mall Cop, his first solo star vehicle for the big screen.
The film is completely forgettable, frequently funny and weirdly satisfying in a Jersey Loser Gets Respect kind of way.
It's a juvenile motion picture designed primarily for a juvenile audience. But there's a little more here than one might reasonably expect.
Paul Blart: Mall Cop is a slapstick comedy with a hero who is a nice guy. I thought that wasn't allowed anymore.
San Francisco Chronicle:
I suppose the food equivalent would be that nacho cheese that comes in a can with little chunks of jalapeno mixed in.
As cheapo larks go, it's a winningly unassuming one: no stars, no big action set pieces. Just a fat guy, a near-empty mall, and a lot of really ridiculous ideas.
Globe and Mail:
James, at his best when he lets loose, plays his character a little too straight and so loses some of the movie's comic potential.
The last name Blart may be the funniest thing in the movie, so that's a hint as to just how bad this shopping-center saga can be.
An almost shockingly amateurish one-note-joke comedy on which the star also shares writing and producing credit.
[Has] such obviously humble intentions that busting on it is a bit like harassing the junior high school outcast who just wants to eat his tater tots in peace.