“Bad Boys II” was directed by Michael Bay who also directed the previous film. This is the second film in the now known trilogy. The film sees Will Smith and Martin Lawrence return to their respected roles. The new cast include Gabrielle Union, Jordi Molla, Peter Stormare, Otto Sanchez, Henry Rollins and Jon Seda. Other side characters from the previous film also return such as Joe Pantoliano, Theresa Randle and John Salley.
8 years after the events of the first film, Detectives Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence) are infiltrating a KKK drug operation. Marcus is wounded by a blind shot from Mike but nothing serious. At a family picnic, Marcus and his wife Theresa (Randle) are discussing Marcus’ decision to leave the department and Mike but at the same time, Mike is in a relationship with Marcus’s sister, Syd (Union) who is actually an undercover DEA Agent who is investigating a money laundering and drug scheme with a Russian mobster (Stormare) and a Cuban drug lord, Johnny Tapia (Molla). With these web of lies and whole lot of gunfire, Mike and Marcus must try to put their differences aside and do their jobs by taking down Tapia and the Russians before their personal lives are once again put in jeopardy.
Almost 10 years after the first film, this movie dials it up to 11 with much more action and comedy. This was a great film and one the best sequels ever. It does follow somewhat of the same formula as the first but still maintains its own character. Smith and Lawrence once again shine bright as the titular characters and have bought some much needed comedic relief to the genre following sci fi greats like “The Matrix Reloaded” and the rise of the comic book film like “Spider-Man” and “X-Men”. Bad Boys 2 is one the great action movies of the 2000s and really holds up today. Gabrielle Union was a great addition to the film and Jordi Molla played a solid villain. It has typical Michael Bay traits but those are expected.
After Bad Boys 2, it would be 17 years before we saw these characters again, in 2020’s “Bad Boys For Life” as Smith, Lawrence and other would return but it would the first film without Michael Bay as director. Will Smith would continue his run of successful films with roles in “The Pursuit of Happiness”, “I, Robot”, “I Am Legend” and “Seven Pounds”. In 2016, he would join the DC Cinematic Universe as “Deadshot” in “Suicide Squad”. While Smith’s films haven’t been great since “The Pursuit of Happiness”, Bad Boys 3 was a step in the right direction. Martin Lawrence has kept a lower profile over the years but did appear in a slew of comedies and family films such as “Wilds Hogs”, “Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins”, “Rebound”, “Death at a Funeral” and “The Beach Bum”. Michael Bay would go on to direct the “Transformers” series as well as “The Island”, “Pain & Gain” and “6 Underground”.