A preposterous espionage thriller starring the unlikely pairing of Chris Rock and Anthony Hopkins, Bad Company
is a prime example of brash, mainstream filmmaking. The plot premise says it all: with its separated identical twins, Russian terrorists, stolen nuclear weapons and high-tech gadgetry, it's an attempt to tie up elements of Lethal Weapon
, Bond and The Matrix
in one semi-coherent whole, although director Joel Shumacher never really pulls it off. The main fault lies with the relationship between Hopkins and Rock--the former looking increasingly uncomfortable in leather jacket and baseball cap. Rock, meanwhile, has the potential to be a fine actor (demonstrated by his fine turn in the Dogma
) but is given very little to work with here aside from a weak, Eddie Murphy-style comedy stereotype. Despite all its shortcomings, however, Bad Company
manages to build up to a fairly diverting, reasonably exciting conclusion.
On the DVD: Bad Company's DVD release is totally in keeping with the film itself: brash and showy, certainly, but lacking in real content. The gadgets, guns, explosions and chases all come up well in the digital format, as does the extensive use of the breathtaking Prague backdrop to the action. There are virtually no extras, however, with the package limited purely to a behind-the-scenes feature where everybody involved maintains what a great piece of work this film is, how wonderful the rest of the cast were and how much fun they had making it. --Phil Udell
CIA agents Gaylord Oakes (Anthony Hopkins) and Kevin Pope (Chris Rock) are working undercover in Prague, attempting to infiltrate a gang of black market arms dealers and prevent a nuclear bomb from being detonated on US soil. When Kevin is killed by a gang of rival criminals, the agency tracks down his identical brother Jake (Rock again) and, in order to complete the mission, hires him to replace Kevin. But after only three days of training, will Jake be ready to take on a gang of international criminals, many of whom are eager to see him dead? And, more to the point, how will veteran agent Oakes cope with his new motor-mouthed sidekick?