By Adam Donato
Bad Boys was released 25 years ago in April of 1995. The film is a Jerry Bruckheimer production and is directed by Michael Bay. It’s a buddy cop movie starring Martin Lawrence and Will Smith. The duo have to swap lives as they try to protect a witness and solve a narcotics case in Miami.
Bay is one of the least-respected directors in Hollywood, at least according to critics. His films prioritize action over story and are often annoyingly offensive. Bad Boys is not as bad as Transformers in those regards, but it’s close. To Bay’s credit, he usually makes a sleek-looking movie. The setting of Miami is beautiful and all the characters are very good-looking people. Action sequences are his forte and they do look good in this movie. There’s lots of explosions and gunfights for all the action junkies out there. Even Bay was annoyed with the story of the script as he called for rewrites and was given little to no resources to do so. The bit of Marcus, the married man, and Mike, the bachelor, switching lives to fool the witness goes on forever and is repetitive. The case they are solving isn’t interesting in the slightest and every time the story cuts to the bad guys, it’s a snooze fest.
The saving grace of this movie is Lawrence and Smith. The two have very good chemistry and are a lot of fun to watch bicker with each other. It’s hard to understand their backstory as you’re just kind of thrown into them being friends and being on a case. Speaking of the case, there is nothing significant about this case for the two lead characters. While they both almost died throughout, neither is given any kind of substantial character arc. They both start and end in the same place. It’s funny to imagine how much generic garbage this movie would be if the two leads weren’t so charismatic.
Tea Leoni, Joe Pantoliano, and Theresa Randle are the standouts of the supporting cast. Leoni holds her own up against the main duo. Pantoliano is very funny as he is full of energy every time he’s on-screen. Randle is a riot throughout the whole movie as she continuously gets mad at her husband for everything he does. The worst part of the supporting cast is the villain. He’s always angry and shooting people. That’s about it. Anyone looking for an antagonist with any kind of personality or depth, forget about it.
Overall, it’s hard to hate this movie. Smith in the nineties is always a treat to watch, although Lawrence does carry the movie. Seeing the iconic hero shot of the two leads and hearing the Bad Boys song playing is enough to call this movie enjoyable. This movie has enough personality to overcome the blandness of its story. Bad Boys isn’t necessarily bad, but it’s also not very good.
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