It’s a brave filmmaker who sequalises a film ten years on from its original release. We’ve already been granted a Collector’s Edition and a Superbit version of the first film, so here they’ve just given us everything at once with a massive two disc 'Collector’s Edition'. And does ten years lend the characters anything new, or does it continue along the original premise? Neither, really.
Martin Lawrence (Marcus) and Will Smith (Mike Lowwwwry) reprise their roles as terminal Bad Boys with no shirts who shoot people and drive cars and shag women. Except for Martin Lawrence, who is as sexy as a dishrag and whose character is married to someone well beyond his reach in the real world. Add to this Gabrielle Union as Sydney, Marcus’ sister, and the stage is set.
After busting a bunch of KKK dudes, the Boys are chasing some heavy ecstasy drug dealers importing their shit into Miami. After several car chases and shootouts, the trail leads them to an overseas supplier in Cuba where more gunfights and car chases and people getting capped occur. The End.
As a film, Bad Boys II suffers the fate of actors picking up older roles and trying to remember how to play them. Thankfully, Lawrence and Smith haven’t developed artistically since then, so it’s a snap. This brings nothing new to the table in the least here, except for some ultra-cool special effects and a kickarse car chase along a freeway. The baddies are played in over-the-top fashion, the gunfights are ladled out with buckets of claret exploding everywhere and there are not so many scantily clad women all over the show. It was always gonna be a desperate premise for a sequel, and here the ‘originality’ of the original has been over-milked and bears forth little. The cinematography is similar and in this way the film looks a lot like its predecessor, but as to laughs, well...
There is little by way of the comedy of the first film and the overall atmosphere seems to be one of urgency. No one’s laughing and the scant laughs seem tacked on. There is also a much grimmer storyline and around a third of the way through this kicks in and any laughing is definitely over. The film is certainly grislier than the first, which also takes the fun out of it entirely. Scenes in a morgue that are supposed to be funny are just sickening as are some car chases involving a mortuary van.
What am I saying? It’s a typical empty-think-tank repeat with a thin plot tying together a bunch of cool opportunities to utilise technology and do stunts. As a stunt film it rocks without question, but if you’re wanting a little something extra from your Bad Boys you’re barking up the wrong tree. The plot is vapid with the villians being Cubans and Russians with a healthy mix of Haitians in there as well. No doubt Bad Boys III (coming summer 2013) will feature Afghanastani wholesalers importing machine-guns-that-fire-babies or something.
Superb through and through. One teensy tiny fault in shadow detail not always being the best but this is a very, very minor flaw. The sleek and stylish visuals cover the same territory as the first film to good effect with the bullet-time shot early in the film being supremely kick-arse. Another highlight is in the freeway chase, with some faultless computer animation making best use of the full cinema aspect of 2.35:1 (with 16:9 enhancement).
A deserving ten outta ten.
Ten more. If you have a nervous or fragile sound system, it's probably best not to watch this film. Even at half-mast the sound shook the windows at my place and some of my glass kitty ornaments fell off shelves nine and eleven.
Dialogue is sailorish at the least of times stretching into all-out kiss-yer-mother-with-that-mouth? However, all is easily understood and you might learn a thing or two, swear-wise.
Musical supervisor P. Diddy has done his homework extremely well with a killer soundtrack that definitely fuels the film. Plenty of phat hip-hop beats fill the movie out, with our man Dr. Dre filling in the rest.
And it’s all brought to you by Dolby Digital 5.1 surround, of course.
Well, it’s a sequel. It’s cashing in on a few old ideas and updating them, but the humourous undertow of the first film is just not present. While the film looks very similar visually to the first and features some balls-out stuntwork and visual effects, it is a far more brooding film and not quite the Bad Boys we watch every Friday night on Channel Ten.
Still, as an action film it maintains the tension with a veritable plethora of astounding adrenaline packed stuff and will thrill the action film junkies. Just don’t go looking for anything light, because it just ain’t in here. Perhaps America has lost its sense of humour in these things since 2001, and indeed that September event rates a mention, but it also seems to infect the lighthearted nature of the original characters, changing the whole atmosphere to a darker one.