There isn’t much I can say about Bad Boys II that I didn’t already say in my review of Bad Boys. This is pretty much the same movie, with a few slight alterations.
Instead of chasing a heroin dealer, the boys are trying to stop the flow of ecstasy. Tea Leoni is replaced by Gabrielle Union. The chemistry between Lawrence and Smith is still there, as is their foul mouthed humor from the first. Unfortunately everything gets bogged down by action sequences that go on far too long.
In short: Michael Bay strikes again.
This film is probably 5 years too late. The first Bad Boys film was really successful and entertaining, so it was inevitable a sequel would be considered. Unfortunately the film took nearly ten years to make. The original was released in 1995, but the sequel didn’t come until 2003. It took too long to find a gap in schedule for stars Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, and director Michael Bay. It was too big of a gap for audiences, I think. In between films Will Smith had become a super star. I’m really surprised he would want to come back for this film, he’d moved past Bad Boys since its release and it really feels like he’s doing somebody a favour even appearing in this sequel. Martin Lawrence was obviously free, I feel like he may be the only one keen for a third instalment. Everybody else has moved on to bigger things.
The best thing about the original was the chemistry of Smith and Lawrence, and it is here again in the sequel. The two leads feel like they’re old friends and play off each other really well. Their chemistry together is by far the films highlight. The action in this film is fast and furious. This was made just after the popular car film came out and they’re clearly trying to copy it somewhat. It doesn’t feel right at all for this film, the action seems very over the top compared to the first one. It feels a bit cheesy to be honest.
The supporting cast is ok. Joe Pantoliano is fun as the boys captain. Gabrielle Union is a run of the mill love interest for Will Smith, who just happens to be Martin Lawrence’s sister, and Jordi Molla is a generic Cuban drug dealer villain. There’s not much to write home about here, except for Pantoliano. Also, do keep your eye out for future Man of Steel and Boardwalk Empire star Michael Shannon. He plays a white supremist that gets arrested by Smith.
This film is a pretty big letdown compared to the original. The two leads still have great chemistry, but it’s not enough to help a generic story, cheesy action sequences, and a sub par supporting cast.