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Bad Boys
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Reviews & Ratings for
Bad Boys More at IMDbPro »

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Index 53 reviews in total 

32 out of 37 people found the following review useful:

Not your ordinary teen movie

Author: Snoopymichele from CT
13 February 2005

I recently saw this movie again (on video, not the uncut DVD). I hadn't seen it in about twenty years, but it affected me the same at 35 as it did when I saw it on cable at 14. It is one of the grittiest, rawest movies I have ever seen, and it works on a visceral level. The performances of Sean Penn and Esai Morales in this film go to show why they have both continued to be two of the hardest working actors in Hollywood. After seeing Penn as Jeff Spiccolli in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High," I was amazed by his range in this film (although he was excellent in "Racing With the Moon," which if memory serves me right also came out around this time). Morales took what could have been a one-note role and turned it into a caricature of a revenge-bent punk, but his talent even back then was clear that he was up to the challenge of putting emotion into the role and bringing some sympathy to Paco's plight. Clancy Brown and Ally Sheedy were excellent in their roles as well.

The movie worked not just because the acting was great, but because the story moved along at an exciting pace. It was suspenseful and was not overly cliché or pat. Overall, it was an unforgettable movie experience, a strong cautionary tale that still makes people think.

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22 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

Penn At His Grittiest

Author: Brian Washington (Sargebri@att.net) from Los Angeles, California
26 November 2003

This is probably one of the grittiest teen flicks to ever come out. This film puts all the films in the Dead End kids to shame. Sean Penn is perfect as Mick and Esai Morales is great as Paco. Also, this film as well as the similarly themed Born Innocent pulls no punches as it shows how the juvenile justice system which is supposed to rehabilitate young offenders does just the opposite and makes them even more hardened. This truly is one of the best films of the 1980's.

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15 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Great Film with some heart-wrenching acting

9/10
Author: Jose Cisneros from Miami, FL
11 January 1999

This film has to be one of the best youth crime dramas around. Sean Penn delivers a strong performance as a troubled youth, without the will but the courage to change his ways. Ally Sheedy also delivers a strong performance as the sole light in Penn's insane lifestyle. Esai Morales delivers a strong performance as a youth who has takes the wrong roads in life. Buckle up, and get ready for an emotional ride by some talented actors/writers/director in this movie.

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15 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

Awesome film.

10/10
Author: Assavari from Canada
21 December 2006

Bad Boys is a gritty, suspenseful film dealing with drugs, rape, death and young delinquents existing in a hostile environment. I just want to point out that this is NOT the Michael Bay film of the 90's! This version of Bad Boys was released in 1983 to moderate success at the box office, compared to the summer blockbuster status of the newer Bad Boys films. Rick Rosenthal (Halloween 2) occupied the director's chair with strong support coming from Sean Penn, Esai Morales and Reni Santoni. The story goes like this: Mick O'Brien (Penn) is being held in a juvenile facility for the vehicular manslaughter of his rival's younger brother. The rest of the plot is a riveting tale of suspense as his nemesis Paco (played by Morales) rapes Mick's beloved girlfriend while Mick is still in prison. This vengeful act lands Paco in the same prison where our character Mick currently resides. What follows? You guessed it; a barrel full of drama as a dramatic confrontation between Mick and Paco ensues! I first saw Bad Boys a few years ago after I purchased it for 3 dollars in a used movie bin. It ended up being the best three dollars that I ever spent! It really is that good of a movie. I realize I might be a sucker for early 80's dramas, but I rank Bad Boys as the most under-rated film of Sean Penn's entire career. It's hard to believe that he was only 22 in the movie, having just come off the set of Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Esai Morales is solid throughout as Penn's rival as well. Apparently Esai used to get quite a bit of attention from young girls visiting the set. This left Sean Penn in a crabby and malicious mood, which resulted in him getting a gym membership and having some prep talk with director Rick Rosenthal. For more on that conversation I suggest you listen to the films commentary track. All of the acting in Bad Boys is 100 percent believable at all times. I actually felt like I was in a deadly prison environment where one minute I have a best friend and the next he's making a stereo to blow up in my face! Oh yes…Bad Boys is that bad! On a more technical note, I really enjoyed some of the steadicam shots that follow characters down various stairways and around sharp corners. There is even a mistake in the last 10 minutes of the film where you can plainly see a steadicam operator directly in the shot! But it is barely noticeable considering how intense the last few scenes are! The movie itself is rather dark in some spots; which is probably the result of the lower budget price tag. But nonetheless, this film is much better than any other teen angst movie of the 80's that I've seen (including Coppola's 'The Outsiders' released in theatres only 2 days later!). There is really so much more to Bad Boys then I can write in these few paragraphs. It paints a dark picture for the American judicial system and an even darker picture for dramas of the early 80's. Please see this movie!

10 OUT OF 10

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Outstanding!

10/10
Author: pwmoses from Philadelphia, PA
25 May 2000

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a great film. When I saw it when I was around 12, it made me petrified of ever going away to a juvenile prison. I think since I saw it, I've always thought twice before doing something stupid. The director gets such tremendous performances out of the actors, that it doesn't seem at all like the viewer is watching a film, but a documentary. In fact, these great performances go all the way through the credits, when Sean Penn is crying and the guards lead the others prisoners to their cells after the climatic fight scene. To just single out Sean Penn's great performance would be a travesty to all of the others. The musical score is very sad and moves the film along always at a poignant pace.

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10 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Intense view into crazy youths

10/10
Author: lloydyboy_uk from Glasgow, Scotland
16 January 2007

This film shows a world that most people will never ever see. It blasts you into this intense, horrible, psychological nightmare. Thinking of what it would be like to be a part of this facility creeps me out.

The acting is top class and there are loads of familiar face that make you laugh when you think of them in recent films ha ha.

I don't want to give anything away but if you like harsh movie you will love this one! things like KIDS, Doom Generation, Thirteen etc Great movie 10 out of 10.

This film had made me want to watch more of the directors works. If this is his standard then im sure i will not be disappointed.

Lloyd Alexander

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

American version of Scum

Author: sandspider1 from Manchester, England
5 March 2003

I loved this film it was excellent, it had a good cast, good story, good performances and you could really understand the characters. This film is very similar to Scum but although both are very gritty I think this film is a little better. Sean Penn is good in every film he has starred in but this film is what made him a creditable actor. If you want to watch a film with a good powerful story then I recommend this and I thought the ending was pretty good if a little predictable.

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9 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Sean Penn's best film next to Dead Man Walking

Author: Jon (ssgtjon@hotmail.com) from San Antonio, Texas
3 September 2003

Sean Penn must have impressed audiences with his performance in this film after his first major role as a lovable goof and pothead in Fast Times at Ridgemont High, playing in his more familiar territory of sinister and brooding criminals. As film critic Roger Ebert stated for this movie, Sean Penn's character isn't just some misunderstood kid who's just lost and needs a little love and understanding (though he does seem to become a somewhat better person throught the movie). The first part of the movie opens with him robbing a woman breaking into her car, slugging a man trying to retrieve the womans purse, and then attempting an armed robbery from a fellow enemy of his selling drugs (with Spin City's Alan Ruck helping out). Anyway, I thought the movie was a very realistic and unexploitative film depicting inner-city youths of the early 1980's (though I think the film would do well today too and doesn't seem dated). All performances were great, but I thought the best performances came from unknowns Eric Gurry as Penn's brainy, but very crafty cellmate and Jim Moody and Reni Santoni as firm, but fair and compassionate counselors in the detention facility.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

One of Penn's best films

9/10
Author: RoseNylan from United States
20 September 2009

This is a fantastic crime drama/thriller about a troubled teen(Penn) who accidentally kills a young boy during a bungled drug heist. He is sent to a maximum security juvenile correctional facility and is thrown in with some of the meanest, most violent young criminals. Meanwhile, the older brother of the young boy that he accidentally killed is out for revenge and tries to get back at him through his girlfriend(Ally Sheedy) outside of prison.

Many of the horrific images in this film will stay with you for a long time. There is a constant sense of fear and danger that lingers throughout the film and is highlighted by a terrific score by Bill Conti(Rocky, The Karate Kid). Penn gives one of his best performances here. A must see film.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A great "Street kids" drama

Author: BasilFlty from Hollywood
6 May 2001

Sean Penn, Esai Morals, Ally Sheedy, and the other principles in this film deliver great, realistic, gritty performances. Certainly one of the great performances of Penn's career.

My only complaint is that the DVD release by ARTISAN ENTERTAINMENT & REPUBLIC PICTURES - Deletes 2 scenes from the original. (That may explain the bargain pricing). The deleted scenes I noticed are: 1. The scene in which Ally Sheedy's character picks Esai's character out of a line-up. 2. A scene inside the Juvenile facility where the inmates are watching the Richard Widmark film "KISS OF DEATH", where he pushes the old, wheelchair-bound lady down the stairs, much to the delight of the inmates!

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