The first reviews for Bad Boys For Life have landed.
So was it worth waiting the 17 years since Will Smith and Martin Lawrence got together and blew up most of Miami in Bad Boys 2?
It seems that perhaps it was.
The movie finds the best mates and cop partners older but not necessarily wiser, taking on an assassin who is linked to Smith's character Mike Lowrey's past
Rolling Stone's Peter Travers reckons: “Having wisely kicked original director Michael Bay to the curb, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence prove that they still have enough '90s action-movie chemistry to lift this cop buddy movie above the herd.”
“[Directors] Adil and Bilall bring a breath of fresh air and fun energy to a franchise that felt somewhat stale, even 25 years ago, when the first film was likened, not inaccurately, to a carbon copy of Lethal Weapon,” adds The Washington Post.
“Bad Boys for Life is very much in the spirit of the first two films — cacophonous, at times preposterous, hyperviolent, coarse, silly.”
Variety notes: “Will Smith and Martin Lawrence bring their A game, never letting us feel like they're going through the motions. The marks may be standard issue, but they hit them with with fury and flair.”
Says The Playlist: “Bad Boys For Life is, by most standards, a 'better' movie than the previous sequel, with plenty of fun moments. But, ultimately, you'll forget it by next week.”
Per The Hollywood Reporter: “Decisively the best of the trio; it actually has a heart, or what passes for one in a gigantic, slam-bang industrial enterprise like this.”
Not everyone is on board this rollercoaster, however.
“Bantering back and forth, Lawrence and Smith manage to recreate some of their screen chemistry-though not enough to make anyone want to go on another bumpy ride,” says AV Club.
There was, perhaps, a touch of hubris involved in bringing Michael Bay's original franchise back from the dead, however.
While critics enjoyed the comradeship of Smith and Lawrence in the first movie, the second movie was hammered by critics.
Veteran critic Richard Roeper named it the worst film of 2003, though he appears to have enjoyed the new one.
“Though it sticks to the buddy-cop playbook, this threequel is worth seeing for the stars' great give-and-take,” he wrote in the Chicago Sun-Times.
Bad Boys For Life lands in the UK tomorrow.