In the conniving world of politics, even a professional shyster like Thomas Jefferson Johnson (Eddie Murphy) can find himself outmatched. After using name recognition to get elected, ... See full summary »
Oddball cop and tough guy, Jack Cates is the only survivor of a cop shooting and in hunting down the murderer collects Reggie Hammond from jail for 48 hours. Hammond is oddly motivated to help. The killer is searching for his stash of cash. Cates and Hammond who have the Black-white, cop-crook thing to work out make surprisingly good partners as they navigate through the city looking for their suspect.Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
The boys are back in town. Nick Nolte is a cop. Eddie Murphy is a convict. They couldn't have liked each other less. They couldn't have needed each other more. And the last place they ever expected to be is on the same side. Even for... 48 HRS See more »
When Ganz and Billy Bear try to escape in the city bus, they exchange gunfire with Reggie and Cates and the bus window was shattered, yet when the bus is last seen escaping, the windows are intact. See more »
The original UK version of 48 HRS. was released with a '15' rating on CIC video in the mid-1980s, but had every swear word edited out of it (what was basically the TV version). The film was re-released on CIC video in the early 1990s in an 'uncut' version with all language left in, rated '18'. Strangely, both versions on CIC video altered Reggie's singing in the prison cell. Whereas in the original version of the film he was singing "Roxanne" by the Police, on the video he is singing a different song, probably because of copyright/licensing reasons - it has even been removed from the end credits. In order to remove the song it was dubbed in by an Eddie Murphy soundalike, but the other dialogue in the scene (when you can hear Reggie's singing in the background) had to be dubbed over as well. This has ended up with Jack's dialogue being spoken by someone other than Nick Nolte. The replacement actor's voice is very high-pitched, which is unintentionally rather amusing. See more »
This is the one of the movies that kicked off the buddy cop formula. Technically, Nick Nolte's the only cop, but other films have tried to imitate the style by having a tough, cranky, by-the-book cop (Nolte's character) paired off with a loose, easygoing, unorthodox cop (like Murphy's character). Some of these "imitators" have failed miserably and even those that succeeded don't match up to "48 Hours."
I haven't seen the unedited version of this movie in over ten years (it plays on TV like 4 times every month), and even when I did catch it on TV, I caught it in bits and pieces. Now that I've seen it straight-through, in its uncut form, I can regard this as an overlooked classic. Watching Nolte as the gruff, chain-smoking Jack, I thought to myself, "He owns that part." Many actors have tried to take on that same role, but nobody plays it better than Nolte. And the same goes for Eddie Murphy. His talent has been taken for granted over the recent years, since his career has hit a major slump. And rightfully so. He should choose his roles much more wisely. How do you from doing such fun, memorable films as "48 Hours," "Coming to America" and "Trading Places" to doing "Showtime" and "I-Spy." This movie proves that Murphy can go leaps and bounds with his comic talent, if the script is well-written. The scene in the all-white, country-western bar, where Murphy shows off his skills as an interrogator, is a classic.
The film is directed by Walter Hill, who's great at directing action sequences. So the movie packs a punch in both the action and comedy department. Nolte and Murphy's chemistry is priceless, and the banter between them is sharp and hilarious. One of my favorite examples is when Murphy asks Nolte, "Can you tell me a bedtime story?" Nolte responds, "F**k you." "That's my favorite one." Of course, Murphy gets most of the credit for being the comic relief, and he is terrific in one of his best comic performances, but Nolte belts out just as many funny lines as him, though he's the official straight man. He never seems to say anything intentionally funny, but that's what's funny. He says things that are hilarious, but sounds dead serious about them. And of course, it's also hilarious to watch him react furiously to Murphy's taunts.
Those who haven't seen "48 Hours" should really check it out, because it's an action classic! Sure, the "Rush Hour" films are good, but Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan don't have close to the same magic as Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy! THIS is how an action/comedy is made!!
My score: 9 (out of 10)
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