Riding into the miami sunset
Some action franchises become forgettable after several years past without a new sequel. The Bad Boys franchise, a series where Michael Bay first created his trademark style of action, falls under the same category as another certain series featuring fast cars and shooting. The first film has its' 90s charm and the sequel has such chaotic action that it makes up for everything else it's lacking. Ever since, not much has been done with the series with an exception for a tv spin-off so it comes as a surprise that here we are now, nearly 17 years later with a new sequel and my oh my did Bad Boys for Life really impress me. We find our favorite duo Marcus (Martin Lawrence) and Mike (Will Smith) continuing their escapades as cops in the streets of Miami. However, Marcus has ultimately decided to retire and turn in his badge in contrast to Mike who wishes to stay in the action until he's 100 as he mentions. As the two try to convince one another about changing their mind, a mysterious new foe with a grudge against Mike comes to Miami turning the city
into a bloody warpath. When it hits close to home, the two put aside their differences for one more ride and take on the new enemy. Given how this series was originally directed by Michael Bay, anyone familiar with the director's work will know the level of rambunctious action that'll ensue. However, this time the reins have been handed over to two first time directors (Adil and Balil) so the level of action lunacy has been dialed back [for the better] and injects something the series has never had before: authentic character development. That may come across as an over-exaggeration since we're talking about a franchise that features Will Smith barreling downhill into a town in a giant
Hummer but believe it or not, it is a very welcome change and it gives the series an unusual but much needed shot in the arm. The action still thrills and yes, it is still overtly bloody than it should be but the directors embrace the elements that the past films established; cheesy humor, stylized gunplay and most importantly, Will and Martin's enduring funny chemistry while also throwing in some callbacks that fans will immediately recognize. As far as action movies go, this "threequel" could've been better but then again, it didn't have high standards to begin with so this can be seen as big plus as it now stands as the best one in the series yet. Bad Boys for Life proves that old franchises can still find new life and mature with the times while also evolving into something better.