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Bad Boys For Life (2020)

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  1. 1. Grade it

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As quite a belated sequel, Bad Boys for Life is a slight but fun bit of action-oriented entertainment. It’s about on par with the 1995 original, and for better or worse, it’s not as brazenly kinetic and obscene as the 2003 sequel. Having shed Michael Bay and his excessive impulses, this sequel successfully focuses more on the central relationship. Though the story is generic and the villains are forgettable (despite a twist meant to add some emotional weight to the proceedings), the action sequences are fun and energetic under the direction of Adil El Arbi and Bilal Fallah, and the chemistry between Will Smith and Martin Lawrence is palpable and carries the film a long way. Perhaps it’s that they’ve gotten older and aren’t surefire bets like they were earlier in their career, but the bond between Smith and Lawrence feels stronger and more affecting in this film than in the prior two. It’s throwaway escapist entertainment, but it’s effective while it lasts and should satisfy audiences that remember either of the first two films fondly.




Stray Thoughts:
- I knew about the villain twist going in, and I was incredibly amused to see that Will Smith did basically the same character twice in the span of three months. And honestly, if you had told me that a Bad Boys sequel would do an "older Will Smith grapples with aging through facing a younger version of himself" story better than an Ang Lee film prior to the arrival of the first Gemini Man reviews, I would not have believed you.


- It's crazy how each sequel in this franchise makes its predecessor feel like a relic of a far different cinematic and cultural time. It also makes me feel old as hell to be referring to a 2003 film whose release I remember very clearly as a relic.

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Posted (edited)

Man, the action scenes in this were so inconsistent. Sometimes has some inventive and cool stuff but other times absolutely horrendous and incoherent (and I'm not talking Michael Bay style incoherence). There's even this one time where they seem to try a one-shot which would have been fun but there's this extremely jarring cut right in the middle of it (felt like an editing mistake to me). The VFX was also really, really bad (even the muzzle flash VFX was bad at times) and there was so much that just looked fake. Really feels like the movie had a really low production budget eventhough it was made for 90 mil (which is lower than the 2nd film but still high). Yeah, I agree this is more comparable to the first film than the 2nd one, espescially in terms of the action, but I think even the first one was better in terms of the chemistry between the main duo and the comedy.


Also was way too serious for a Bad Boys films. I almost burst out laughing in the scene where Martin Lawrence randomly starts praying but I then realised it was meant to be serious. Boring villain too. Like I expected, it held back on everything I thought that made the 2nd film such a fun time and instead settles on mediocrity (I guess you can't really recreate Bayhem either).



Edited by lorddemaxus

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