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Bad Boys: Impact of a Legend

A review and analysis of the “Bad Boys” film series

By Joe PattersonPublished about a month ago Updated about a month ago 3 min read


Yeah I know I don’t sing it as good as the original product, but you get my point. Ever since 1995 the Bad Boys film series starring Martin Lawrence and Will Smith has become one of the greatest buddy cop comedy ensembles in the history of cinema. This past weekend just saw the release of the fourth film in the series Bad Boys: Ride or Die and with it's already massive reception, let’s take a look back at the iconic road that led us to where we are today with the Bad Boys franchise.

Bad Boys (1995)

Directed by Michael Bay in what was his directorial debut, Bad Boys was released on April 7, 1995. The film’s plot follows best friends and Miami Police detectives Mike Lowrey portrayed by Will Smith and Marcus Burnett portrayed by Martin Lawrence and their quest to bring down a drug lord who is responsible for their death of a friend of theirs. Their quest also groups them with Julie portrayed by Teá Leoni, who is a key witness in the case. The film was an instant hit that launched the action genre careers of both Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, as well as establishing Michael Bay as a bonafide action film craftsmen.

Bad Boys 2 (2003)

Eight years after Bad Boys became a 90’s classic, Michael Bay, Martin Lawrence and Will Smith gifted fans with a surprise sequel with Bad Boys 2. This second entry brings back Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett in a struggle to bring down an exstacy kingpin with the help of Burnett’s sister Sidney portrayed by Gabrielle Union, who is in blooming romance with Lowrey. This second product was highly stylized with action and over the top with comedy that vastly outdid its predecessor. This sequel was an even bigger hit than the original and was one of the most acclaimed action films of the early 2000s, eventually gaining a cult following.

Bad Boys For Life

After the success of Bad Boys 2 fans patiently waited for a third entry in the franchise for the next couple years. For the longest time many of us thought we would never see the highly sought after sequel. On January 17, 2020 faith in Michael Bay was restored with the release of the third entry in the series Bad Boys For Life. 17 years in the making, this third entry sees Lowrey and Burnett fighting against a queen pen foe from their past who brings with her a gift of the present. This third entry was a largely satisfying callback to early days of Bad Boys and was once again a critical and commercial hit at the box office.

What exactly is it that makes the Bad Boys films so entertaining and iconic? First and Foremost it is the chemistry between Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. The two mesh so well together with their mix of comedic brotherly love, topped with brazen attitude. Furthermore the rest of the cast balance out the film with characters like the hardened mentor Captain Conrad Howard portrayed by Joe Pantoliano.

Joe Pantoliano as Captain Conrad Howard

The consistency of Michael Bay’s direction also contributed to the success of the series. In my personal experience the Bad Boys franchise is without a doubt one of the most cinematic action films ever. The highly stylized action in the film is not just a result of the story, but in a sense also tells the story of the films. Fast forward to the present day and the world has just witnessed the debut of the fourth entry Bad Boys Ride Or Die. The film has already become a large critical and commercial hit, further solidifying the impact of the franchise.

The Bad Boys brand is now alive more than ever. Like many movie buffs, this film series is one of my all time favorites starring two of my biggest heroes of entertainment. What’s next for Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett? With the success they have already had with the fourth entry I think it is safe to say that this dynamic duo will be around for a long time.

Bad Boys Ride Or Die

movie review

About the Creator

Joe Patterson

Hi I'm Joe Patterson. I am a writer at heart who is a big geek for film, music, and literature, which have all inspired me to be a writer. I rap, write stories both short and long, and I'm also aspiring to be an author and a filmmaker.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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Comments (3)

  • Michelle Liewabout a month ago

    I've always liked these two. Will Smith is an actor's actor.

  • Not my sort of thing but a great review

  • Vicki Lawana Trusselli about a month ago

    Bad Boys watcha gonna do? Well written and I enjoyed reading your critique

Joe PattersonWritten by Joe Patterson

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