Bad Boys - Blu-ray Review

'the jokes are still funny, the chemistry between Smith and Lawrence is still palpable, the gunshots still sound like a comedy clapperboard and the music still appears to have been composed by a Pet Shop Boys reject'

The loading screen on the Bad Boys Blu-ray turns out to be a metaphor for the transfer of the film. A black and white image of Will Smith and Martin Lawrence slowly gets coloured in from left to right in sharp, almost day-glow, colours, complete with bright green palm trees in the background. This is apt because when the films starts, in an over-saturated view of a Porsche driving down a road at what looks like sunrise, the first thing you'll notice is that this is one of the best Blu-ray transfers around; edges are sharp, colour hues are quite frankly amazing and everything here looks like the funky 1990s palette the film aimed for.

What's even more pleasing is that everything else the film aimed for fifteen years ago still holds true today. The jokes are still funny and snappy, the chemistry between Smith and Lawrence is still palpable, the gunshots still sound like a comedy clapperboard and the music still appears to have been composed by a Pet Shop Boys reject.

What this results in is a 'how-to' of the action comedy - a perfect lesson in making something which keeps audience on the edge of their seats - whether through laughter or an uncontrollable urge to run away from Téa Leoni's awful 'acting'. In a two-hour runtime that flies by but never feels rushed, Michael Bay shows that he can do a relative amount of intelligence whilst blowing several things up in huge fire balls. Introducing Joe Pantoliano as the dynamic duo's stressed-out superior for example, is brilliant and inspired casting and Bay uses him just enough to make us laugh whenever he's on screen but never enough to make us bored of him.

Eventually, the film concludes with the kind of shoot out that results in every stereotypical action cliché you can think of (falling from a great height? Check. Hero injured? Check. Damsel in distress? Check), but crucially, Bay never forgets his sense of humour in all the madness; 'if I die' says Lawrence to Smith, 'I'm fucking you up', before running into a hail of gunfire. It's genuinely fantastically entertaining stuff, made on (as one of the otherwise sparse documentaries reveals) a relatively shoe-string budget and after fifteen years, it's still streets ahead of pretenders like The Losers and Cop Out.




Bad Boys was released on Blu-ray in the US on 1st June. It is available in the UK from 7th June.

Look further...

'Is it the end all, be all of buddy action movies? No, but it’s a helluva ride' - Foolish Blatherings, 3 and a 1/2 out of 5

4 comments:

  1. Oh, such a double edged sword. To be honest, the oft underrated, Tcheky Karyo made this movie entertaining for me. I like Will Smith, and Lawrence can be alright, so they made it watchable. Just the sequel to this... my god.

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  2. I thought about mentioning Karyo but just ran out of room. He's great though, makes a brilliant villain. I've actually never seen the sequel but this is a real favourite. A guilty pleasure enjoyed, not very guiltily.

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  3. Of all the movies Michael Bay has done. This and The Rock are the ones that I seem to like.

    Everything else after wards are absolute fuckin' crap.

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  4. I've got some sympathy with other Bay releases but yeah I agree, BAD BOYS and THE ROCK largely stand the test of time as good, silly, action fun.

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