Bad Boys: Ride or Die Movie Review

“Bad Boys: Ride or Die” is the latest in the long-running franchise started in 1995. Started back when the Miami Vice was not very nice, the two Miami cops are still out chasing drug dealer and cartel leaders. But now, a major Bad Dude has turned the tables on the Boys, and now they are running away from the law. Let’s see if quippy remarks and smart-alec banter can get out of this sticky situation…



Detectives Mike Lowrey (played by Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (played by Martin Lawrence) are mourning the loss of a dear friend — Captain Howard (played by Joe Pantoliano). In the prior movie — Mike found that he had a son named Armando (played by Jacob Scipio).


In a complicated turn of events, Armando was directed by his mother — a now-deceased cartel boss — to kill the people who had gone against her. That is Captain Howard wound up dead, and how Armando wound up in prison. But now there is a Bad Dude out there working to smear the name of Captain Howard and discredit Lowery and Burnett.


Mike had a prior relationship with newly-promoted Captain Rita Secada (played by Paola Núñez). She is taking over for Captain Howard. Rita is now going with a politician from the Mayor’s office named Lockwood (played by Ioan Gruffudd). Mike is now getting married to Christine (played by Melanie Liburd).


But at the reception, Marcus Burnett finally has all of his unhealthy eating catch up to him. Marcus is down for the count, and he is nearly declared dead. He is in the hospital, and he tells Mike that he met with Captain Howard, in a breezy tropical beach in the Afterlife. Marcus said that Howard told him it was not his time to die.


The Bad Dude — a guy named McGrath (played by Eric Dane) — gets a fake scandal setup to tarnish Captain Howard’s good name. He is able to link Howard to millions in drug cartel money. When the news gets out, Captain Rita Secada has her hands full with the FBI and the US Marshalls coming to investigate. Captain Howard’s daughter is one of the Marshalls, Agent Judy Howard (played by Rhea Seehorn). She wants to see if Lowery and Burnett are in the dirty dealings.


Lowery and Burnett go to investigate and they talk to Armando in prison. He knows something about the unnamed Bad Dude, and he has seen his face. Armando is put on a prison transfer place with Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett. They have promised to keep him safe, but to also keep him under lock and key.


But Bad Dude McGrath has endless resources and even more evil henchmen at his disposal. He is able to take down the plane and make it look like Lowery and Burnett planned a prison escape for Armando.


Now McGrath has Lowery and Burnett on the run with Armando. The Miami police are looking for them. The FBI is looking for them. The US Marshalls, especially Agent Judy Howard, is looking for them. So McGrath turns up the heat, and puts out a dead-or-alive contract on all three of them. Now every gangster and street thug is out looking for the Boys…


They are able to find a way to contact Captain Rita Secada to get her help. Also, there are a couple of Miami cops who know and respect Lowery and Burnett. It is a police tech expert named Dorn (played by Alexander Ludwig) and fellow tactical expert Kelly (played by Vanessa Hudgens). Outside of this small, close-knit group — anyone could be a traitor. There are people to squeal on Lowery and Burnett, and soon McGrath has his goons out to kidnap family members.


Captain Howard is still very much dead, but he is able to give the Boys plenty of clues to solve the case. Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett don’t have much in the way of resources, unlike McGrath. But they have the friendship and loyalty of people they have known for a long time. That includes Armando, and Captain Secada, along with Kelly and Dorn. When they have all that to guide them, then all they need are some firepower, some hi-tech snooping, and some witty one-liners. Also, an occasional slap in face might be required!


Lowery and Burnett have this little tight group working with them — outsides the bounds of the Law. But that is what it will take to defeat the vicious Bad Dude McGrath and his endless minions of trigger-happy, bad-shot henchmen.


McGrath holds hostages, and the Boys want to find a way to take him down – once and for all. McGrath has a secret lair in an abandoned alligator amusement park. It will be a fitting tribute to feed a few of McGrath’s men to the sixteen-foot albino gator!



“Bad Boys: Ride or Die” is great ‘turn off your mind’ type of Hollywood has been making ever since… 1995. That is the year that brought the characters (Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett) together with actors Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. It was sweet, sweet trash-talking banter, some explosive action scenes, and the Miami sex appeal all tied up with a bow. Audiences loved it, and the hits just keep on coming.


New directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah took over from original Michael Bay. That was for the prior release. This action-filled movie is probably going to top the “Bad Boys for Life” (2020) flick in terms of box office. There is not a lot of new concepts or fresh ideas in here, but when you have a reliable formula — don’t change your course.


The movie is mostly focused on the way that Will Smith and Martin Lawrence interact. The side characters and sub-plots are not the reason why you would see a “Bad Boys” movie anyway. The real reason is Mike and Marcus bicker and bray on about how the other one is not perfect. There is always a slap in the face — just to get your attention. And this one is not delivered by Will Smith!


“Bad Boys: Ride or Die” is out take you along for an enjoyable Ride — since this franchise is not showing any signs that that it is about to Die!


Bad Boys: Ride or Die

Directed by: Adil & Bilall
Written by: Chris Bremner, Will Beall
Based on Characters created by: George Gallo
Starring: Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig, Paola Núñez, Eric Dane, Ioan Gruffudd, Rhea Seehorn, Jacob Scipio, Melanie Liburd, Tasha Smith, Tiffany Haddish, Joe Pantoliano
Cinematography: Robrecht Heyvaert
Edited by: Asaf Eisenberg, Dan Lebental
Music by: Lorne Balfe
Distributed by: Sony Pictures Releasing
Release date: June 7, 2024
Length: 115 minutes
MPAA rating: R for strong violence, language throughout and some sexual references
Genre: Buddy Cop Action


Rating contributor: JMcNaughton tmc

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