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‘The Lovebirds’ review: Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani make a meh comedy duo

One plus one can occasionally equal too much. A prime example is the new Netflix chase-comedy “The Lovebirds,” starring Hollywood darlings Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani as a pair on the run from the law — and a killer. Likable though they are, their distinct comedic personalities don’t gel at all. Rae, a fun-loving everywoman, is best-known for creating and starring in the terrific HBO series “Insecure,” while the awkwardly observational Nanjiani co-wrote and starred in the Oscar-nominated “The Big Sick.” Both of ’em are swell, but in “The Lovebirds” the actors are, to borrow a popular new phrase, alone together. Most of their scenes come off as low-stakes dueling stand-up routines, rather than a plot that builds ...
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