Starring: Martin Lawrence, Luke Wilson, Peter Greene
Director: Les Mayfield
Running Time: 93 mins
Blue Streak is an American film about a thief who, years after stealing a priceless diamond, masquerades as a police officer in an attempt to get it back.
Although it’s quite as bad all the way through, Blue Streak is a film that can easily get on your nerves. Its silly premise is entertaining enough, and provides for some good laughs throughout, but with a mixed bag of both underwhelming and often annoying performances that often take centre stage ahead of the jokes, the film just isn’t as enjoyable as it really could be.
Let’s start off on the bright side, however, with the fact that there are a good few laughs here and there in this movie. It’s not the sort of movie I ever expected to be laughing my socks off at, but I was delighted to see some fairly decent comedic writing that allowed for the odd entertaining mishap, never feeling too dumb or repetitive but instead genuinely funny enough to keep you entertained all the way through.
What’s more is that the film’s story is pretty entertaining as well. Although it’s no work of scriptwriting genius, the premise of a former criminal posing as a police officer, and then inevitably having to deal with former colleagues of his now from the other side of the law, the plot is the perfect recipe for a good few silly mishaps along the way, as well as a properly entertaining action finale as well.
It’s not a story that will have you riveted by the mystery that it at times tries to develop, but what is properly entertaining from start to finish is watching Martin Lawrence bumble his way through pretending to be a cop, with a lot of close calls to giving up his identity.
Having said that, the performances, and in particular Martin Lawrence, are one of the reasons that Blue Streak really falls down. It’s a silly and enjoyable film at times, but what’s also the case is that the likes of Lawrence go way overboard in their performances, shouting and pushing their way through the film, dominating every scene to a particularly irritating extent, and having a huge impact on the potential funny factor of the main character.
Also, the likes of Luke Wilson and other supporting players are just a bit underwhelming. The screenplay doesn’t do a lot of the supporting characters many favours by writing them as braindead and stupid as possible, but the fact still remains that there’s nobody else in the film with that much energy or excitement behind them, meaning that it eventually turns into the Martin Lawrence show with nobody to come and put a stop to it.
Overall, Blue Streak was a bit of a mixed bag for me. On the one hand, it’s got some good comedic writing and an entertaining plot, but on the other, its performances are either too loud and annoying or too simple and underwhelming, making it a frustrating watch given what could have been potentially a lot more fun, and that’s why I’m giving it a 6.5.