Paramount Pictures | Release Date: December 8, 1982
8.5
USER SCORE
Universal acclaim based on 128 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
112
Mixed:
12
Negative:
4
Watch Now
Stream On
Review this movie
VOTE NOW
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Check box if your review contains spoilers 0 characters (5000 max)
8
TheFilmDoctorMar 22, 2016
Although dated, there is a brute edginess to this popular slice of formula odd coupling. It’s not just about Eddie Murphy’s foul-mouthed comebacks, although they were never as bouncy or cutting as here, or Nick Nolte’s irresponsible bullyboyAlthough dated, there is a brute edginess to this popular slice of formula odd coupling. It’s not just about Eddie Murphy’s foul-mouthed comebacks, although they were never as bouncy or cutting as here, or Nick Nolte’s irresponsible bullyboy pose he has spent the rest of his career trying to unseat, but also the way Walter Hill pitches a ready Hollywood staple into a harder, dare-we-say more realistic world. It’s as if Lemmon and Matthau had stumbled into The French Connection, with the added spice of race.

Indeed, there’s more than a casual tip-of-the-hat in Murphy’s (possibly career best) scene in which, posing as a cop, he saunters into a redneck bar, Confederate Flag pressed to the wall, humming with racist lunks, and jives his way to supremacy. It’s the direct inverse of Gene Hackman’s take-over of a black-filled Harlem bar in that famous thriller. “I'm your worst **** nightmare, man!” snaps Reggie to the dumbstruck clientele. “A **** with a badge.” The writing is an equal to Murphy’s whiplash tongue.

As this is a film by Hill, who has busily traded in a violent, earthbound machismo (Southern Comfort, The Warriors) it hardly pulls its punches. If anything, this must surely count as the most violent “comedy” in film history, as Hill dwells on the many bare-knuckle beatings (usually involving Nolte) that are his particular filmic peccadillo. Yet, he’s also a skilled purveyor of a piquant, scuzzy atmosphere, a lurid, criminal underbelly where it takes two distrustful specimens to further the cause of good.

Their story is regulation potboiling, the bad-guys are simply that, bad to the bone, the good guys have the bonus of character and the two stars are having a ball. Nolte no less than the showpiece his partner grants, threads in a sense of pressing moral determination beneath his louche, jack-the-rules exterior. That the fact they come to appreciate one other, the grudging respect of a million clichés, feels so satisfyingly, shows just how successful the film is.
Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
All this user's reviews
9
IznatiCriticAug 31, 2010
An Eddie Murphy classic. Is this movie going to change the way we view life??? No. But it will keep you laughing and nervous at the same time and that is a delicate balance, one highly underrated. I like to rate films within their genre.An Eddie Murphy classic. Is this movie going to change the way we view life??? No. But it will keep you laughing and nervous at the same time and that is a delicate balance, one highly underrated. I like to rate films within their genre. And for its genre it is at least a 9 !!!! Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
All this user's reviews
7
Voodoo123Jan 9, 2020
Watching in 2020...while 48hrs has certainly not aged well in places, (the screenplay often feels clunky esp some of the 70's/80's slang!) there is something to be said for Walter Hill's pacing ballet between drama/comedy and action thatWatching in 2020...while 48hrs has certainly not aged well in places, (the screenplay often feels clunky esp some of the 70's/80's slang!) there is something to be said for Walter Hill's pacing ballet between drama/comedy and action that later defined its own genre of endless copies. There is a beating heart in the characters brought to life by the talented cast. Still holds up surprisingly well! Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
All this user's reviews
7
muldjordFeb 29, 2020
Even though the movie has not aged well, that is sort of also what makes it a nice watch even in 2020. I can't figure out if all the hard-cop "cool" stuff going on at all times was meant to come off as comedic back then, but it surely isEven though the movie has not aged well, that is sort of also what makes it a nice watch even in 2020. I can't figure out if all the hard-cop "cool" stuff going on at all times was meant to come off as comedic back then, but it surely is nowadays. It's so bizarre how macho this movie tries to be - it becomes utterly ridiculous.
My favorite parts are whenever Cates gets into a car and drives off. How he has to screech around corners ALL. THE. TIME! Even when they are shadowing the Luther guy, they are yelling and making a ruckus you wouldn't believe. And Cates constantly lighting cigarettes and throwing them wherever. Even inside! It's some underplayed subtle practical humor going on that kind of makes the movie work. But I can't figure out if it's actually supposed to be funny... It has to be, right? I mean, this was not seen as tough in the 80's was it? Or was it? I dunno.
Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
All this user's reviews
8
Steven1981Mar 18, 2020
Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy star in this 1982 action comedy. Directed by Walter Hill (Red Heat) it is a pretty simple piece of film making with a simple story. The story is some criminal escapes and a cop, Jack Cates (Nolte) releases someNick Nolte and Eddie Murphy star in this 1982 action comedy. Directed by Walter Hill (Red Heat) it is a pretty simple piece of film making with a simple story. The story is some criminal escapes and a cop, Jack Cates (Nolte) releases some convict from prison named Reggie Hammond (Murphy) to help Cates catch the criminal. What Reggie's connection to Ganz the criminal is in the movie I've never figured out and I've seen 48 He's a million times lol. The connection is actually very unclear but anyway the criminal is played by James Remar and Sonny Landham is part of his gang, sadly Sonny Landham is dead in real life so R.I.P to him. So what 48 Hrs delivers in terms of entertainment is a few things, a story to think about because all of it's not 100% clear besides the obvious and a great fight scene between cop and convict as Murphy and Nolte have a fistfight on the street lol. The comedy is fairly decent and some scenes are funny especially when Eddie Murphy says to Nolte you've treated me like crap and I want some food and the next thing you know Nolte says to Murphy "There's ya god damn dinner!!" after taking a candybar out of a vending machine which is hilarious. Some good shooting scenes but sadly no explosions, 48 Hrs isn't big on violence but the violence it has is fairly decent allowing for the characters to develop and the story to be more involved rather than being flooded with blood and guts. Great performances and great acting especially from Annette O'Toole as 48 Hrs remains an action classic and decent comedy. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
All this user's reviews
8
EpicLadySpongeFeb 1, 2016
Another installment for Eddie Murphy's earliest years in movies. He didn't betray us with these kinds of movies, he saved his own movies from the 1980's and 1990's for the best.
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
All this user's reviews