Director: Baltasar Kormakur
Starring: Denzel Washington, Mark Wahlberg, Paula Patton & Bill Paxton.
Running: 109 Mins
Buddy cop movies signified 1980/90 action flicks with Eddie Murphy and Nick Nolte's 48hrs, Tango and Cash and Beverly Hills Cop to name a few. While modern Hollywood tends to be more ambitious with dramatic tales featuring pretentious dialogue, a movie such as 2 Guns could be potentially overlooked by so-called movie connoisseurs as Ryan Gosling parades the fans with his good looks and facial expressions in Only God Forgives, and Johnny Depp and Tim Burton try to squeeze endless money from the passive. If you look hard enough, Denzel Washington and Mark Whalberg can be seen in the background advertising a simple movie that is well shot, ambitious and truthfully funny; it goes down as one of the most surprisingly entertaining flicks of the summer.
2 Guns is an explosive tale of two ambitious individuals who believe they are working for the right cause only to discover loose ends that could spell the end of their careers. It was important to pair the right actors to create the necessary chemistry and that is well advertised in the opening scene as Robert "Bobby" (Denzel Washington) and Michael "Stig" (Mark Wahlberg) are in a restaurant which conveniently sits next to a bank. The story flashes back to show us the initial plan, played out by Stig. What they both know is their friendship is fake as both Bobby and Stig are working to rob the bank for different associates; Bobby is an undercover DEA agent and Stig is a Naval intelligence officer. It's the vanity in both characters that gets them into trouble following the robbery as Bobby's alliance as well as Stigs', betray the supposed plan leaving both men blackmailed and head hunted by Earl (Bill Paxton) who is determined to retrieve his money in the bloodiest and funniest ways possible.
The result of the bank robbery sees Stig sitting on 43 million with nobody to turn to. Bobby is also left out in the dirt as he is destined to investigate the motive behind his agencies portrayal; all while dodging bullets from the Mexican Cartel, the Navy and of course, Earl and his cohorts.
If 2 Guns sounds messy, it is, but all in good fashion as it supplies an endless amount of funny characters and die hard murderers. The movie focuses on two concepts; a survival premise as 2 Guns is blended with numerous "bad guys". On the other hand, its a fantastic reference to 80s and 90s "Buddy" action flicks, as Bobby and Stig come to realise the daunting task of having to work together in order to survive this mess and that's where director Baltasar Kormakur introduces a comedic ingredient that advertises great chemistry and wit about each of our protagonists.
2 Guns is the first movie to showcase Denzel Washington's humorous side. Okay, he has a certain amount of "swag" in almost all of his movies that can make him funny anyway, but he is full on this time around and bounces off Mark Walhberg's character so smoothly, you would think these two were raised in the same home!
This movie isn't trying to be perfect, with the introduction of Bill Paxton transforming it into a right cheese-fest at times, but that premise is recognisable from the off. Bill Paxton's Earl is a vicious character, playing a villainous Governor of California (Terminator free) to the extreme. While 2 Guns is explosive and funny, a movie like this can't fulfil it's buddy cop premise without an exotic female intervention that uses the clichéd fall out of two apparent friends and Paula Patton as Deb does just that.
Overall, director Baltasar Kormakur did a great job in constructing some great action scenes with dialogue of serious and humorous. While we know of Mark Walhberg's comedic side from Seth McFarlen's "Ted", nobody could have predicted the chemistry between Mark and Denzel would work so well.