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Laramie Movie Scope:
Bad Boys: Ride or Die

Bad Boys reawaken box offices

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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June 12, 2024 – Following the success of “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes,” the seriously weak movie box office slump returned and continued until last week. And who would wake things up? Why, none other than good old slap-happy Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the third comedy action “Bad Boys” sequel, produced again by Jerry Bruckheimer, among others. In less than a week, this film has already grossed over $100 million worldwide.

Among critics, Will Smith and Jerry Bruckheimer are not popular, but they are very popular among movie, streaming and TV audiences (this movie rates an A- on Cinemascore, based on audience surveys). Will Smith is an award-winning actor who has starred in many other popular films, like “Independence Day,” “Men in Black” and “I Am Legend.”

Following the Slap Heard Round the World at the Oscars, though, Smith landed on Hollywood's cancel culture naughty list, and job offers dried up. That will probably change again because of the success of this movie. There is a reason they call this the film industry and not the film art project. Hollywood is in it to make money.

A big factor in the success of the Bad Boys movies is the comic chemistry between Smith and Lawrence, who play buddy cops Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett, respectively. In this movie (the title of which borrows a phrase from the popular “Fast and Furious” movies) the bad boys are on the run, with Mike's son, Armando (Jacob Scipio of “The Outpost”). They have been framed by a drug cartel, so the police are after them, and so is the cartel, and other criminals seeking the bounty offered by the cartel.

All this is tied up in a scandal involving the late Captain Howard (played again by Joe Pantoliano of “The Fugitive”) who was murdered, then framed by the cartel to hush up his investigation into law enforcement corruption. Mike and Marcus, along with a few trusted friends, are on a mission to find out who murdered Howard, and uncover the evidence needed to nail the corrupt and clear the names of the innocent.

Complicating matters is a near death experience by Marcus at Mike's wedding. While unconscious, Marcus communicates with the dead Captain Howard, and becomes convinced that it is not his time to die, so he begins to take outrageous, comic chances with his life. When the cartel targets Marcus' family, they encounter a deadly foe in a U.S. Marine, Reggie (Dennis Greene, reprising his role from previous “Bad Boys” movies) who is Marcus' son-in-law.

There is plenty of action in this movie, of course, including car chases, a helicopter crash, an airplane crash, a big, mean alligator, and plenty of shoot-outs. The movie follows genre formulas right down the line, so it is fairly predictable, but it is also fun, with humor sprinkled throughout the story, amongst all the bloodshed.

Directed once again by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah (who also directed “Bad Boys for Life”) this is another solid action movie. Expect to see these guys directing more movies in the near future. Backed by a solid cast, especially Jacob Scipio, the dynamic duo of Smith and Lawrence are packing theaters once again in this action comedy. It rates a C+.

Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in digital formats, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff (no extra charges apply). I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 2024 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)

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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at dalek three zero one nine at gmail dot com [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]