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I Weep For Cinema

Bad Boys Trilogy (1995-2020)

I honestly don’t know why it took me so long to watch the Bad Boys movies. I loved Will Smith in pretty much every movie I’ve seen him in, and Martin Lawrence has always been a actor I enjoyed when I saw him in stuff too. So it always seemed odd that I never sat down and watched these movies before. I only recall one time when Bad Boys 2 was playing on HBO and I tuned into to catch a single part of it, but I never finished the film.

So while I’ve been in hotel rooms for the better part of this year, I have been going through a lot of movies, and I finally just decided to watch all three Bad Boys movies, now that the trilogy has been completed. 

Bad Boys 1

This is a classic Michael Bay late mid 90’s action flick. With just too many shots of military helicopters and tactical espionage that really doesn’t have much to do with the actual plot. The two detectives, Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett are best friends and also partners with the Miami PD. Drugs go missing and a murder takes place, a woman is a witness to the murder and has to be protected by the two detectives. What ensues, is basically your typical buddy cop antics, lots of screaming, bullets flying, identities mistaken, lies and accusations and all that. It’s a Michael Bay film after all, so the action is at the forefront and the main point of the entire movie. 

Overall, it’s a very average action movie, with two great lead actors doing what they do best. Will Smith is a smooth talking, wise crackin’ stud, and Martin Lawrence plays the comic relief with a bit of that whinny “I don’t want to do this, but I’ll always have your back” partner. It’s a good movie, but nothing more than that.

Bad Boys 2

A true “Summer Blockbuster” of a movie. Clocking in at two and a half hours. The budget got blown out of the water with more crashes, more guns, more effects and more explosions. It takes the sequel formula and follows it to a T. Same characters, different location, and bigger and more expensive. 

Again,with Michael Bay directing, This is exactly what you expect. The unlimited budget really shows and it makes for a better experience, even if the characters don’t get any deeper than surface level. There are plenty of hilarious parts in the less intense scenes, and everything flows well. The captain and others having to do mandatory psychiatrist counselling is great, the dad and “uncle” being overly protective of his daughter going on a first date is priceless as well. This sequel goes so beyond the scope of believability within the opening minutes, you just have to turn your brain off, sit back and enjoy it

Bad Boys For Life

Yes, like with all films around 20 years old, this too got an unnecessary random out of nowhere 3rd movie…. But that’s ok, it actually works quite well as a cap to end a trilogy of movies with respect and dignity. Although the “Bad Boys For Life” title works in universe for the saying for the two detectives, they also  should have saved it for a possible 4th movie using it as a title “Bad Boys 4 Life” instead… but that’s just me.

The movie picks up years later as Smith and Lawrence are clearly older and not in their prime. And that’s exactly how it should be, they shouldn’t be trying to pretend these characters aren’t still 30+ years old. They do get paired with younger actors, who just get in the way most of the time, and really just drag down the main plot. I understand why they are in the movie, but it seems like wasted space and you can see right through them. 

The effects aren’t as great, the action isn’t as bombastic, but it has an extra layer of heart that you don’t see in the other two movies. I have a soft spot of these unnecessary continuations of movie franchises… when done right. And I really believe Bad Boys 3 is a great ending to a now trilogy of movies with fun characters, where everyone looked like they were having a blast on set.