Starring: Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Gabrielle Union
Director: Michael Bay
Running Time: 143 mins
Bad Boys II is an American film and the sequel to Bad Boys. As dangerous drugs begin to take over the streets of Miami, detectives Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett are called into action to bring down the source.
By all means a satisfying and enjoyable follow-up to an excellent action-comedy, Bad Boys II has all the laughs and explosions you need for more good blockbuster fun.
That said, it doesn’t quite have the slick charisma of its predecessor, nor is it anywhere near as engaging in terms of character drama, often proving a rather preposterous blockbuster that never really comes back down to earth as it needs to.
But first things first, let’s start with the positives, the biggest of which lies in the fact that, although it tells a largely similar story as Bad Boys, Bad Boys II is rather good fun to watch.
Its seemingly bloated runtime of 2 hours and 23 minutes actually passes by with ease, and with impressive pacing and a consistent mix of comedy set-pieces and massive action, it never grows tiring.
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are great once again in the lead roles, with perfect chemistry as a part of the lead duo, and are just as funny on their own as they get into all sorts of silly scrapes and scenarios.
What the film misses out on, however, is a little bit more focus on the contrasts between the characters that, as well as making for a more interesting story, makes their dynamic even funnier, as in the case of the last film.
This time round, Will Smith’s Mike Lowrey isn’t quite the serial ladies’ man he was in the last film, and Martin Lawrence’s Marcus Burnett, while still a great laugh, often seems a little under-energised compared to his last outing.
Of course, character development between films is fair reasoning for those changes, but that doesn’t do much to serve what Bad Boys II is aiming for, with that lack of character contrast and depth really hurting what was easily the funniest and most interesting thing about the previous film.
When it comes to the action, there’s no denying that Bad Boys II takes things up a level, with huge explosions and massive action set-pieces that are clearly part of an enormous budget going up in smoke. It’s typical Michael Bay fare, and it does make for some entertaining blockbuster thrills and spills here and there.
However, the action is just a little too far-fetched, and the explosions all a little too silly to really match the down-to-earth nature of the crime story from the last film.
It may spark a laugh or two here and there, but the detectives’ participation in bringing down an international drugs ring goes way beyond the impressively slick and often gritty intrigue of the previous movie.
As a result, there are times when Bad Boys II seems to go a little overboard with so much budget at its disposal. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a fun film, but that preposterous action actually takes away from the inimitable charisma and cool that added to the original so much.
So, despite more good laughs and enjoyable action throughout, Bad Boys II isn’t the film that its predecessor was, often going too far with enormous blockbuster thrills and spills, and not doing enough with its characters that, at least judging by last time round, are the funniest suit the movie has. So, that’s why I’m giving Bad Boys II a 7.1 overall.