Bad Boys for Life takes viewers back to the story of Miami detective duo Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett, but this time at the end of their careers. Burnett wants to retire after becoming a grandfather. But Lowrey is still stubborn to eradicate criminals until he is 100 years old. The situation worsened after Lowrey was shot by a stranger and in a coma for several months.
Apparently, the shooter also killed several members of the police to the judge. Research carried out. Back from the hospital, Lowrey wants to find the criminal who shot him. But when Lowrey invited Burnett to return to action, Burnett refused and insisted on enjoying his retirement at home.
Had been opposed by Chief of Police Conward Howard, Lowrey was allowed to investigate this case and become part of an elite AMMO team led by Rita. Together with a team of young blood members Dorn, Rafe, and Kelly, they exposed this crime in a new style.
The return of the wayward Lowrey and Burnett
The absence of Michael Bay after bringing a bombastic action film from the first and second film Bad Boys was felt in terms of the scale of the action. Combo Bilall Fallah and Adil El Arbi behind the director’s chair are arguably not disappointing. Nostalgia still exists with Michael Bay’s cameo which can be seen at the beginning of the story.
The return of the tandem Will Smith and Martin Lawrence to repeat the first film when moving from the television series. At that time, they were considered as one of Hollywood’s best-selling actors. And this time, fighting Smith and Lawrence’s argument is still fun to be enjoyed and an important part of the excitement of this third film.
Not only nostalgia, but Bilall and Adil also bring Lowrey and Burnett characters deeper. The age that is no longer young makes both of them have to consider many things in making decisions, to the family. The plot dynamics are interesting, even the plot twist is unexpected.
Towards the end of this film, the audience will be presented with quite satisfying action. At least the third act was neatly built, although it still left various questions. Stay with a high pace, the fight at the end can be enjoyed. And like other franchises, post-credit saves a cliffhanger for the fourth film.
90s ‘buddy cop’ nostalgia
The ‘buddy movie’ format appeared in 1969 and was started by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. In the ’80s, there was a Lethal Weapon who developed into a comedy action film with two main actors who contradict each other. Then came the Bad Boys in 1995.
Bad Boys became the starting point for Will Smith’s popularity as a Hollywood action actor, before later starring in Independence Day and Men in Black. And you could say that Bad Boys for Life brought Smith back into the line of action after falling far enough when starring in Suicide Squad and Gemini Man.
Indeed the formula given is quite outdated, but its charm hasn’t been lost. Genres like this are still believed to present a dynamic combination of plots, in addition to providing comedy from the two main actors. Finally, Hobbs and Shaw (2019), a spin-off from Fast and Furious, starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham, was a success on the market.
As confirmed by Smith himself, this film is made for the nostalgia of the characters Lowrey and Burnett with a more complex story. Not just about young blood duo that often explodes. Family themes can also be felt throughout the film. And interesting actions and plots make this film still entertaining.
Good, but still not perfect
Bad Boys for Life can be called an interesting spectacle at the beginning of the year, but this film is not a perfect film. Lovers of Smith films and having watched Gemini Man might be able to see the similarity of this film with Smith’s character in the film by Ang Lee. Not much, but clearly visible at the end of the story. Curious? Just look at the climax.
New faces don’t get a chance either. Like the combo, Isabel Aretas and Armando Armas almost disappeared in the middle of the story. The AMMO young squad is still in the shadow of the Lowrey-Burnett combination. But they are quite interesting. Colombia Pictures might be able to make Fast and Furious style spinoffs from this team.
It does not worsen the plot. Comedies are fun to enjoy and scenes of chasing and fighting bring back the excitement of action films that are not too heavy. Smith and Lawrence connect the right action and comedy, like a joke in the middle of a romp action, and a little develop the story of Lowrey and Burnett further. But if developed, this film will be even more impressive for the Bad Boys franchise.
Overall, Smith and Lawrence returned the buddy cop genre in the ’90s neatly, although there were some parts that did not get much attention.