Film review: Bad Boys – Ride or Die starring Will Smith

This summer, Miami’s most famous detectives, Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence), are back in action with Bad Boys – Ride or Die. The fourth instalment of the beloved franchise combines thrilling action with outrageous comedy, as the iconic duo finds themselves on the run, facing new dangers and old enemies. Directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, this film continues the legacy of maximalist fun and explosive antics, ensuring a wild ride for fans and newcomers alike. Bad Boys – Ride or Die is in cinemas from 5 June 2024.

bad boys movie poster

The story

This summer, the iconic Bad Boys return in Bad Boys – Ride or Die, blending edge-of-your-seat action with outrageous comedy. In this instalment, Miami’s finest detectives are on the run, navigating new dangers and old enemies.
 

The trailer

 
 

The verdict

Will Smith and Martin Lawrence prove that ageing can be a blast in this big, loud sequel. Bad Boys – Ride or Die, the fourth entry in the franchise, delivers more of the same over-the-top action and laughs we’ve come to love. Smith and Lawrence, despite being a bit older and wiser, still bring their winning cop comedy to the forefront with plenty of bromance and pointless action explosions.

Under the direction of Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, this film strikes a perfect balance between parody and nostalgia. The action scenes are as wild as ever, from punch-ups in art galleries to helicopter shots of Miami, all reminiscent of Michael Bay’s original instalments. The directors have added their own whimsical touch, making every scene a spectacle, including perspectives from a gun and a military drone, and the franchise’s trademark 360 camera spins. From the parent’s point of view, the movie is shot like a video game, but my teenage son says that video games tend to emulate realistic movie scenes.

The script mixes sitcom-style humour with conspiracy thrills. Marcus Burnett’s (Lawrence) heart attack leads to a hilariously weird vision quest, complete with magical parrots and a ghostly guide in the form of Joe Pantoliano’s Captain Howard. Meanwhile, Mike Lowrey (Smith) faces panic attacks while dealing with his estranged son, good looking Armando (Jacob Scipio). Together, they tackle corrupt officials, navigate absurd action sequences, and even face a giant albino alligator named Duke in an abandoned amusement park.

Smith and Lawrence shine as they embrace their roles as goofy yet tough guys, balancing their cop duties with comedic moments. Their dynamic remains sparky, with real-life friendship glowing through the chaos. The supporting cast, including Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig, and Paola Núñez, add to the fun, even if the focus remains on our beloved Bad Boys.

Bad Boys – Ride or Die borrows some lessons from the Fast & Furious franchise, delivering a dumb, loud, and enthusiastic experience that feels like a warm hug for action-comedy fans. It’s a fun, over-the-top ride that proves the Bad Boys still have it. Whether you’re in it for the nostalgic callbacks, the ridiculous action, or the infectious energy, this film promises a good time for all.

Certificate: 15

London Mums’ rating: 7/10

 

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