Bad Boys Review

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Two LA supercops must swap lifestyles to take down a drugs baron.


Fans of the slam-bang cop action comedy will have their entertainment glands solidly squeezed by this racy party popper of a movie in the line of 48 Hrs, Lethal Weapon and Beverly Hills Cop, produced by the Cop megabuck duo of Simpson and Bruckheimer. A sizeable spring hit in the States, it's already made cinestars of two American TV favourites, comic Martin Lawrence and Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air Will Smith, whose teaming as wisecracking Miami Vice detectives makes a hot partnership.

Lawrence, a hyper hoot and the movie's principle charm, is family man Marcus; Smith, a studly dish, is Mike, a glamour boy with rich folks and a Porsche. Following the elaborately exciting heist of $100 million worth of heroin by arch European villain Tchéky Karyo, the motor-mouthed twosome have 72 hours to recover it before Internal Affairs shuts down their very own, disgraced drugs squad.

Setting about it with appropriate dispatch, they tear through various glossy, violently efficient set pieces (shoot 'em ups, chases, explosions, the familiar drill), pick through grossly dead people and engagingly uphold the time-honoured bickering buddy tradition - they even have a shrieking boss (Joe Pantoliano) to chivvy them along.

Comic complications come courtesy of a Comedy Of Errors-style swapped-identity charade. Frightened eyewitness Julie (Leoni) will only spill her guts to the partner with the ladies' man rep - Smith's Mike. But he's unconscious somewhere at the time, so Marcus takes over Mike's persona and bachelor pad to babesit Julie, leaving Mike to move in with Mrs. Marcus and the kiddies as a surrogate man of the house.

Rest assured, we've seen it all a million times before, but there are abundant (foul-mouthed) funnies, and debut director Michael Bay shows his commercials expertise propelling the noisy nonsense into a frantically slick and thoroughly enjoyable extravaga