If you want to see what a modern day Western looks like, look no further than Baltasar Kormakur’s “2 Guns.” Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg star as Bobby Trench and Marcus Stigman respectively, two undercover agents looking to arrest one another for stealing money from a Mexican drug cartel. What follows is two action packed hours of nonstop comedy as we see two titans of the industry feed off each other’s performance like blood lusted piranhas.
The story starts off with the two agents visiting the home of the local drug boss Papi Greco, played by Edward James Olmos, seemingly to trade illegal passports for cocaine. Greco instead pays them with money because of his recent suspicions of the duo’s true identities. Shortly after, it’s revealed to Bobby and Marcus that they’re both undercover agents. Bobby for the DEA, and Marcus for the Navy. They eventually decide that in order to take down Greco, they’ll have to rob a bank where most of Greco’s money is located in safe deposit boxes. This was probably the weakest point in the film as it’s never truly clear how taking the money will lead to Bobby and Marcus busting Greco’s entire cartel.
After the robbery happens the two realize that the money actually belongs to the CIA and the man behind Greco, Earl (played by Bill Paxton), wants it back. Paxton was far and away one of the best parts of this movie as his character’s antics took the laughs to the next level. He single handedly never let “2 Guns” get too serious as whenever he appeared on screen, his Louisiana drawl and Old Wild West swagger brought out his inherent hilarity. The rest of the film shows the dynamic duo trying to get themselves out of this debacle they’ve found themselves in.
The other major guest role, that of Deb, played by Paula Patton was also a nice touch. Patton played Bobby’s ex and fellow DEA agent. Her chemistry with Denzel was scorching as audiences will get (wait for it) Deja Vu. In a high stakes action film such as this there always needs to be an element of sexiness and Patton was like an agent under ice during every one of her sultry scenes.
And speaking of individual performances the two head honchos of “Two Guns” certainly didn’t disappoint either, both bringing a different aspect of comedic experience. Wahlberg has been in a few comedies in recent years and audiences will immediately see his comfortability in the role. His performance in this film will have fans seeing flashbacks of Terry Hoitz, Wahlberg’s character from “The Other Guys.” Denzel of course, is the newcomer to the comedy game. And not surprisingly, he rose to the challenge as any actor of his caliber would. But what was truly surprising was how adroitly he took on the challenge. Denzel’s type of comedy is completely different from Wahlberg but in this film it worked to his advantage. While Wahlberg immerses himself in pure comedy, Denzel instead invokes his talent for playing serious characters and simply adds in rapid fire quips that totally go with the character. And of course, who wouldn’t be funny with the amount of gold teeth he had in his mouth?
Overall “2 Guns” succeeds because it never tried to be anything other than what it actually is, a huge action flick that tells the story of the season it’s being released in, the summer. It’s big, it’s loud, and quite simply, it’s fun.
“2 Guns” is currently playing in theaters.