Review: 2 Guns / Cert: 15 / Director: Baltasar Kormakur / Screenplay: Blake Masters / Starring: Denzel Washington, Mark Wahlberg, Bill Paxton, Paula Patton, James Marsden, Edward James Olmos / Release Date: December 9th
Based on Steve Grant’s graphic novel of the same name, 2 Guns is a modern day buddy cop film, with a twist. Here we have two partners, Trench (Washington) and Stigman (Wahlberg), trying to make a big score from a narcotics syndicate. When things go belly-up, the two end up on the run from a Mexican drug cartel, the CIA, the Navy, and more. The twist: Trench is an undercover DEA, Stigman is an undercover Naval intelligence officer, and neither knows of the other's deception.
Yes, 2 Guns sounds cheesy and clichéd, and, to some extent, it is, but that gives it a certain charm. Whilst it may not be for everyone, particularly if you’re of the more deep, meaningful and serious variety of film fan, 2 Guns does have a lot to offer. First up, the relationship between the two lead characters is fantastic to watch play out. The chemistry between Washington and Wahlberg grabs you from the word go and has you doing your best to keep up with the lightning-quick dialogue that they exchange on a whim. Regularly bashed by the critics though he might be, Wahlberg excels in roles such as these. Like a cross between Boogie Nights’ coked-up Dirk Diggler and Ted’s John Bennett, Wahlberg’s Stigman reels off genuinely funny quips and put-downs as he moves his way from diner breakfasts to drug cartel shoot-outs. As for Denzel Washington, he’s definitely in effortlessly cool and breezy Denzel mode here, although it’s Marky Mark that steals the show.
As mentioned, the dialogue in 2 Guns is set to rapid fire, almost as if it were something from the mind of Quentin Tarantino. Joining Washington and Wahlberg, we get some great scenery-chewing from Bill Paxton, some mischievously dynamic dealings from Edward James Olmos, James Marsden being James Marsden (if not looking a lot buffer than usual), and Paula Patton coming across as a bit of a lame wheel. She’s not too horrendous (and I’m not going to moan about her baring some flesh), but her scenes just seem a little bland and slack in comparison to the zingers that are going on around her.
2 Guns is a lot better than we were expecting. It actually feels like a Michael Bay movie done right! Big action, some truly stunning visuals, snappy, witty dialogue, and charisma pouring from the screen – 2 Guns works in ways where a lot of similar films fail. It may not be for everyone, particularly certain genre fans, but there’s no arguing that 2 Guns isn’t an entertaining way to kill some time. You’re not going to get anything Earth-shattering or a classic cinematic masterpiece, but you will have some fun, and that’s surely a good thing, right?
Extras: Audio Commentary / 4 Featurettes / Deleted Scenes