After watching “Stuber,” I started thinking about buddy-cop movies … those action comedies where at least one of the twosome was a policeman.
“Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” was a buddy movie to be sure, but it doesn’t qualify because Butch and Sundance were outlaws, not cops.
“The Last Boy Scout” had all the elements, but it was a pairing of a drunken private eye and a disgraced football player.
“Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” comes close, but the heroes are a fast-talking crook and a temperamental private eye – not cops.
With that limitation in mind, here are my favorites:
10) “Miami Vice” — I preferred the TV version, but Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx made suitable replacements for Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas in this stylish buddy-cop outing from Michael Mann.
9) “21 Jump Street” — Here, too, I preferred the TV version with Johnny Depp, but the chemistry was good between Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in this comedy redo.
8) “Hot Fuzz” — A comic gem from that British threesome, director Edgar Wright along with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. This is the same team that gave us “Shaun of the Dead.”
7) “The Heat” — Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy prove that the buddy-cop genre is not just a boys' game. Here they battle both sexism and a drug ring.
6) “The Other Guys” — Mark Wahlberg goes ballistic and Will Ferrell is ridiculously earnest in this silly buddy-cop flick. You will laugh, but you won’t remember the plot.
5) “To Live and Die in L.A.” — As serious as a bullet, we have a secret service duo (William Peterson and John Pankow) chasing counterfeiter Willem Dafoe to the retro soundtrack of Wang Chung.
4) “Seven” — Grim and horrific, Brad Pitt and partner Morgan Freeman tangle with a psychopathic Kevin Spacey who is obsessed with the Seven Deadly Sin. Don’t look in the box.
3) The “Rush Hour” series — Jackie Chan and motormouth Chris Tucker chase bad guys in the traffic of Hong Kong.
2) The “Lethal Weapon” series — Psycho cop Mel Gibson teams up with ready-to-retire Danny Glover in this winning buddy-cop series.
1) “48 Hours” — Nick Nolte is the gruff cop determined to bring in wily Eddie Murphy, but turns out they make for a better buddy-cop team than adversaries.
The “Beverley Hills Cop” movies almost made the list, but they were more a starring vehicle for Eddie Murphy than a pairing with John Ashton. And Denzel Washington dominated “Training Game” over his rookie partner Ethan Hawke. And with “In the Heat of the Night,” Philadelphia detective Sidney Poitier and Mississippi police chief Rod Steiger were never really buddies until the end.
TV made for better buddy-cop pairings. Think: “Starsky and Hutch,” “Cagney and Lacy,” “Rizzoli and Isles,” “Simon and Simon,” “Jake and the Fatman” and “Miami Vice,” etc. Don’t you agree?
North Carolina native and Florida resident, Shirrel Rhoades writes movie reviews and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.