It's blowup bad

JANE STEVENSON

, Last Updated: 11:00 AM ET

It's hard to believe anyone has been looking forward, for eight years, to the sequel to 1995's buddy-cop comedy flick Bad Boys.

Other than, of course, the studio that made triple its outlay of $20 million on the first film.

But if, for some reason, you have been champing at the bit, stars Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, director Michael Bay and producer Jerry Bruckheimer won't disappoint you when it comes to delivering action in Bad Boys II.

Just bring your earplugs, because the mayhem and destruction unfolds at high volume, and go the washroom beforehand since you'll be in your seat for a highly questionable 21/2 hours.

In fact, most of the time it feels like you've entered an ultra-violent video game where it's perfectly normal for life to include ferocious gunplay, mind-boggling explosions, and death-defying car chases.

And let's not forget slow-motion scenes of bullets entering people's backsides, necks, skulls, corpses being mutilated, and the occasional dismemberment, beheading or vivisection.

All in a day's work, apparently, for Miami drug cops Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence), who this time are battling the importation of Ecstasy by Russian and Cuban drug lords.

The barbaric level of violence aside, the good news is that Lawrence is a whole lot funnier than he was in the first film, where it appeared there was no script whatsoever.

Smith, meanwhile, is his usual stylish, unflappable self, decked out either in muscle shirts or designer duds complete with diamond stud earrings.

The "girl role," played by Tea Leoni in the first film, is handled in the sequel by cool-as-a-cucumber Gabrielle Union, who plays Marcus' kid sister Syd, an undercover DEA agent who's also involved with Mike.

As the Cuban drug wacko, Spanish actor Jordi Molla is suitably over the top, while the always watchable Swede Peter Stomare (Fargo) deserves more scenes as the Russian club owner.

Joe Pantoliano also returns from the first film as the Boys' beleaguered police captain, who has adopted Marcus' new-age philosophy on anger management.

How ever will they top this for Bad Boys III? Personally, I can wait another eight years to find out.

(This film is rated 18-A)


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