Wednesday, 24 April 2013

48 Hours Review

The original buddy action comedy movie.  This is the one that inspired things like Lethal Weapon, the Last Boy Scout, Tango and Cash and even Turner and Hooch with its odd couple pairing and fast paced dialogue.  If those were the only requirements, this would be a great movie.  However, in order to make a great cop action comedy, you need more than just a run down dirt bag and a motor mouth colleague.  You also need to have decently written dialogue that not only moves the story along but also makes the viewer laugh.  You need memorable one liners.  48 Hours does not have that.  It's basically an hour and a half of Nick Nolte spouting racial slurs at Eddie Murphy.  There are a few instances where Murphy's reactions are well written and acted but these are too few and far between to save the movie.  I will concede that the delivery is done fairly well by both actors.  But the writing is so ham and cheesy that even the best actors wouldn't be able to save it.

Another thing a movie like this needs is great action.  While it may have been good for 1982, the action does not age well into today.  The shootouts are over acted and chases are nothing special.  I did enjoy the fist fight between Nolte and Murphy because it was reminiscent of Hugh Grant vs Colin Firth in Bridget Jones' Diary in the fact that it was two guys who can't fight but attempting it anyway.  Whether this was by design for the characters or just bad choreography is irrelevant.  It did entertain.

To wrap up those shortcomings, the movie is just out and out boring.  The story has no real intrigue or twists.  Without that, one would have to rely on entertaining dialogue or great action.  And as I mentioned, this movie has neither.  Instead, they use a lot of filler like a useless montage of Nolte driving towards the club that Murphy is in while an entire song is played.

I'm glad it was made because it paved the way for one of my favourite subgenres.  But what it spawned is so much better than what it is.  Don't see it.

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