Everybody's a critic - 'Bad Boys II'

Friday, July 25, 2003

One and a half stars (out of four)

We've seen this buddy-movie in various forms a hundred times before. The only thing original about the plot proves offensive --the concept of having the bad guys hide their dope and money in the hollowed-out shells of dead bodies.

The basic concept might have worked if the execution hadn't been so needlessly graphic. In one of many scenes in which dead bodies are abused, Will Smith is literally up to his elbows trying to find the dope inside one of the corpses. In the most appalling scene in the movie, our heroes ogle the nude and well-figured body of a dead woman, and one of them actually ends up on the gurney with her.

Gratuitous violence reaches a real low point with this movie, and the script does very little to make it worthwhile. But if you're looking for extreme mayhem and bloodshed by the gallons, this one's for you.

- Jeff Rosanswank, federal public defender

Two stars (out of four)

"Demolition Derby II" might have been a more appropriate title for this movie, which features the kind of high-speed chase scenes and massive gun battles you would expect to see. And of course, the movie ends with the standard plot where the damsel in distress is saved from near-certain doom. Naturally, the good guys escape harm despite thousands of bullets flying past them at all times.

Unfortunately, the excessive and unnecessary use of graphic violence and strong language, along with the less-than-sizzling romantic plot between Will Smith and Gabrielle Union, made this movie a marginal watch. Yes, the interplay between Smith and Martin Lawrence is sometimes very funny, but it wasn't nearly enough to justify the lengthy 146-minute duration of this movie. A lot of editing, particularly involving the one-and-only nude scene in the movie, would have been welcome.

- Donna Rosanswank, marketing director

Two stars (out of four)

Will Smith, who "doesn't have to cuss when he raps to sell records," teams up with Martin Lawrence, who cusses enough to set records, reprise their roles as Mike and Marcus in "Bad Boys II." This film starts out with a bang. Let me rephrase that. It starts out with a KKK rally causing several bangs and never gets quiet (do not sit near the front!).

The chemistry between Smith and Lawrence is not nearly as natural as in the first movie. They act a lot more like the Danny Glover/Mel Gibson characters in the Lethal Weapon movies, which is sad because that duo has been run into the ground. "Bad Boys II" does have some funny parts and lots of action, but I could have waited for the video.

I hope the next summer sequel is better.

- Kara Lyons, staff assistant

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