Making the Grades
I don't know what was more painful, watching Anthony Hopkins play a straight guy in the comedy scenes or Chris Rock trying to get serious for the dramatic ones. Either way Bad Company waffles between gags and gunfire in an odd attempt to mix fish-out-of-water humor with a nuclear bomb that's about to explode.
Hopkins plays an impassive, experienced CIA agent, Gaylord Oakes, whose up to his neck in an arms bid for a nuclear bomb when a competitive party kills his partner, Kevin Pope (Rock). Determined to keep the deal from falling through, CIA agents snag Pope's ticket scalping twin from the streets of New Jersey and attempt to press him into service. But Jake Haynes (Rock) is a far cry from his polished and well-educated brother. With only nine days to work their magic, Agents Seale (Gabriel Macht), Swanson (Brooke Smith) and Carew (Daniel Sunjata) step in to help Oakes transform the sharp-witted, street punk into an urbane, antiquities dealer.
After a week of remodeling, Haynes meets up with the Russian dealer (Peter Stormare) and his henchmen in an ancient monastery to negotiate a deal. But the smooth transaction gets shaky when a third party interest group steals the bomb, kidnaps Haynes girlfriend (Kerry Washington) and deploys the explosive in Grand Central Station leaving the newly minted agent to rely on his street savvy to save the girl and defuse the bomb.
Bad Company, billed as a comedy, fires off more rounds of ammo than punch lines between the fighting factions in this arms race. Hand-to-hand combat, knife wielding assassins, suicidal terrorists and an activated bomb in New York City all left me wondering what there was to laugh about when the credits rolled. A good peppering of profanities, a shower scene and some drug references also add to this film's lack of appetizing family fare.
With Hopkins famous for dramas like Shadowlands and Hearts in Atlantis and Rock known for comedic parts in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back and Me, Myself and Irene, this film proves these two names make for bad company on the same marquee.
Discussion Ideas After The Movie
Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Bad Company.
Both Kevin and Jake were portrayed as being gifted in their own ways. How much do education, experience and native intelligence play into the smart factor? Are there important lessons to be learned both in and out of the classroom?
Julie, Haynes’ girlfriend, feels trapped in her situation and plans to pull up stakes and head to Seattle. How can moving to a new area give you a fresh start at life? Can it be difficult to leave behind the support of family or friends?