Movie Review: Bad Boys For Life starring Will Smith & Martin Lawrence

Image Source: The New York Times

Bad Boys For Life

Production Companies: Colombia Pictures, 2.0 Entertainment, and Overbook Entertainment
Director: Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah
Producers: Will Smith, Doug Belgard and Jerry Bruckheimer  
Scriptwriters: Peter Craig, Joe Carnahan, Chris Bremner, David Guggenheim, and Anthony Tambakis
Main Cast: Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig, Charles Melton and Paola Núñez
Release Date: January 7 2020
Running Time: 124 Minutes
Certificate: 15

Bad Boys for Life is the third instalment in the Bad Boys trilogy. It claimed the title for the biggest January release of all time.


Mike (Will Smith) and Marcus (Martin Lewis) reprise the roll for another film of adventure, comedy, and suspense. In other words, the boys are back.

Firstly, Mike and Marcus are apart of Miami’s Police Department. Alongside Kelly (Vanessa Hudgens), Dorn (Alexander Ludwig), Rita (Paola Núñez), and Rafe (Charles Melton) they must take down the ruthless Armando.

We begin with Marcus’ retirement party. Suddenly, Mike is shot. After recovering, Mike begins the investigation into his own case causing trouble. With the support from Marcus and the AMMO team; they discover that the motive behind the murders links to a case that Mike worked. Whilst serving as an undercover agent in Mexico, Mike began by putting his love interests first. It all started when Mike fell in love with Isabel (Kate Del Castillo), the wife of the Aretas Cartel leader. After promising a new life together, Mike remained loyal to his career. Despite her being the only woman he claims to have loved.

Isabel’s only son, Armando (Jacob Scipio) is behind the brutal killings. Upon reflection, Mike comes to the conclusion that he is Armando’s father.

In the end, after the final showdown at Hidalgo Palace, the secret that Isabal has been keeping from Armando is finally revealed. Resulting in Isabel’s death. Mike, Armando, and the team fight to survive as the building begins to burn to the ground. Eventually, they all escape and seek medical attention.

Finally, Mike visits Armando in prison to offer him a chance to earn some redemption for his crimes which he accepts.


As noted earlier, Bad Boys for Life is the third film in the series. Often trilogy’s lose the power to be entertaining, as sometimes they feel like a carbon copy of the first. But this is equally, if not better than the previous two. However, this screenplay is full of suspense and adventure, which compliments the script.

And just like the first movie, there are plenty of humorous moments that help to break up the tension. It’s no secret that Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are both extremely funny actors. Besides, who doesn’t love ‘Dad’ joke humor? Coupled with the two’s on-screen chemistry, it’s no wonder why the film was such a hit.

In particular, the supporting cast is extremely brilliant. Especially Kate Del Castillo who plays Isabel. Importantly, her character was played to a significantly high standard, A cartel leaders’ wife who practices as a witch and is feared by many, she adapts and fits the role perfectly.

Although the film begins as a slow burner, the narrative eventually picks up and has you gripped. Overall, the film is a great watch. With an entertaining and humorous cast to support this action-packed script, it is certainly one to add to your list.


Last but not least, it has been 25 years since the Bad Boys first appeared on our screens. But undoubtedly they still don’t disappoint. The two veteran stars alongside the gripping narrative have created a film that outshines the previous two. If you’re looking for a film that manages to balance action and comedy to a high standard, this one is your best bet.


Target Audience: 15+
Content: Strong Language and Violence
Recommendation?: Yes

Overall Rating: 8.5/10 – Excellent

Further Details

For more information about Bad Boys For Life, click here.