Bad Boys For Life isn’t actually bad

It’s the familiar scene with a Porsche racing down the street, Mike Lowery at the wheel, his partner Marcus in the passenger seat. Usually, this would evolve into a gunfight of some sorts, but not this time. This time, Marcus Bennet is arriving at the birth of his first grandchild. 

Just that scene should be enough to explain how old the “Bad Boys” stars have gotten. Lowery, played by Will Smith, used to be a daring, suave cop who didn’t play by the rules. Bennet, played by Martin Lawrence, is an absolute fool as a cop but a good family man at heart. 

In “Bad Boys For Life”, Lowery is still trying to be that same cop, despite his receding hairline screaming at him to stop. Bennet, on the other hand, is “too old for this s***,” as he exclaims during the movie. The movie follows the story of these two brothers-in-arms trying to stay on top of a world that they have outgrown. 

After someone tries to kill Mike, he and his partner work with AMMO, an elite group of much younger cops who are more tech-savvy then they are trigger-happy. The shoot first, talk later attitude that Lowery and Bennet work with doesn’t blend well with the methods of AMMO. After watching them use drones and surveillance to try and get a job done, they decide they’ve had enough and jump into the field themselves. 

The action scenes dominate less of the movie than in past installments, but that might be for the best. Without Michael Bay directing explosions left and right, the action scenes aren’t as gripping. The witty banter and chemistry between Smith and Lawrence doesn’t need directing however, and is as hilarious as ever. After 17 years of the two being apart, it is a refreshing experience to see them together once again. 

Overall, the film isn’t amazing, but no “Bad Boys” film is meant to be Oscar-worthy. However, unlike the past two films, this one doesn’t rely on explosions, fire, and camera action to make it interesting. Instead, it offers some depth to the characters, humanizing them in a way that hasn’t been seen before in the franchise. It is by no means a family movie, but it is definitely worth watching, if only for the nostalgia.

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