Bad Boys for Life
Twenty-five years have passed since detectives Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) and Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) first suited up for Captain Michael Bay in Bad Boys, and 17 years have passed since they joined him again for Bad Boys II. For this third helping, the directing team of Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah does a sufficient job of continuing the mayhem, easily topping Bay’s lame original and providing a chapter that is as good, and sometimes better, than chapter two. Burnett is eying retirement, while Lowrey is dealing with the psychological and physical ramifications of aging. (He’s dyeing his goatee, so it’s all good.) A crazy witch lady gangster Isabel (Kate del Castillo) has escaped from prison and has put out a hit list for her son Armando (Jacob Scipio) to work his way through. Isabel has some vengeance in mind. The targets are former associates, and they have connections to Lowrey. Lowrey himself is on that list, and he takes a couple of bullets early in the film. I’m not giving too much away here in telling you that Lowrey doesn’t die. There’s no movie if Lowrey dies. So, a brief healing time later, Lowrey and a very reluctant Burnett are back in action, wisecracking and shooting people in slow motion. Some familiar faces return, including Theresa Randle as Burnett’s long suffering wife. She’s good in a subplot that has Burnett becoming a grandad while getting more house time in attempted retirement. House retirement doesn’t go well. Bad things happen with ceiling fan repair. Joe Pantoliano makes a welcomed return as Pepto-Bismol-swigging Captain Howard, a still capable riff on all of those screaming captains from Beverly Hills Cop movies.