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Don Reviews "Bad Boys: Ride or Die"

There are many times that professions are portrayed in film or TV with glitz and glamor, but what you see is far from the truth.  In some ways, it causes more damage than good like in the case of Miami Vice, where what was portrayed was far from what real detective work is versus what is known to be more grounded in shows like Hill Street Blues.  With this week’s review, Bad Boys: Ride or Die seems to be more like the first than the second.


Directed by Bilall Fallah and Adil El Arbi (who also did Bad Boys for Life), you have the returning Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Alexander Ludwig, Vanessa Hudgens, Paola Nunez, Jacob Scipio, and Joe Pantoliano along with some new faces.  Taking place a few years after the last film, Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence) find themselves trying to clear the name of the late Captain Howard (Pantoliano) that puts them in the crosshairs of drug cartels and maybe even those amongst their ranks as they both deal with life-changing events.  And that is about all you need to know there.


There are certain things you can expect (and you do get) with this film, like multiple action sequences, CGI, explosions, and suspension of disbelief needed to keep the plot moving; on those aspects, it does not disappoint.  The cinematography is great and shows Miami in such a good light it made me want to visit there on my next vacation.  The acting was par for what you can expect in this film, with Lawrence and Smith still having the great chemistry they have had for almost thirty years with the right amount of drama and comedy.


Now the big question is this: how is it compared to the other three films?  Most people would probably say the first two films were the best with For Life being the weakest of them.  For me, the issue lies in the returning directors.  Bad Boys: Ride or Die IS an improvement from the last one with some good moments of action and comedy.   However, it felt about twenty minutes too long and many of the “surprise“ plot points could be seen a mile away.  I cannot say that this is the worst of the four, but it is a far cry from the original. Leave your brain at the door and do not expect too much from this film and you will do OK, which is why I am recommending watching Bad Boys: Ride or Die on a home streaming cable service.

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