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‘2 Guns’ Review Roundup: Critics Hate Plot, Like Washington and Wahlberg

The movie, 2 Guns, starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg, is set to be released in theaters Aug. 2. The film follows a DEA agent and a naval intelligence officer forced on the run after their failed attempt at infiltrating a Mexican drug cartel.

The early reviews are in and so far, the highly explosive action film has failed to impress the critics. While some enjoyed the chemistry between Washington and Wahlberg, most reviewers slammed the movie for its underdeveloped plot and outrageous shoot ’em-up scenes.

Still, some critics conceded that it may have all the ingredients to be a success at the summer box office.

Read below to get a snapshot of the early 2 Guns reviews.

Mary Pols(Time) on director Baltsar Kormakur’s effort:

Director Baltasar Kormakur (who also directed Wahlberg in the much-less-tedious Contraband) employs a number of techniques to try to keep the viewer engaged, including disorienting flashbacks and jazzy slow-motion moments that turn into freeze-frames, but his source material is so weak, it becomes a real effort to keep up. The action sequences — there are enough guns in this movie to make the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre weak in the knees — are drearily unexceptional. This could be any buddy flick made in the past five years, with the chemistry between Washington and Wahlberg offering the only flicker of excitement.

James Verniere (Boston Herald) on the film’s content:

“2 Guns” is vulgar, ultraviolent, homophobic and misogynistic, all the things some boys want most in their video-game-like comic action movies. As Trench, whose only code is “Do whatever it takes,” Washington, too, does whatever it takes, bringing his great strengths to a role and a film that are beneath him. But he makes it bearable, especially in a scene in which Trench is confronted by self-appointed members of the U.S. border patrol. Dorchester’s Wahlberg is similarly slumming here. “Lethal Weapon” was a buddy-movie synergistic triumph. “2 Guns” is a cynical and unoriginal knockoff.

Scott Foundas (Variety) on Washington and Wahlberg’s onscreen chemistry:

A movie like this rises or falls by the chemistry of its leads, and Washington and Wahlberg, two of the most likable leading men in movies today to begin with, are especially likable here. The roles are hardly the most challenging of their respective careers, but they invest them with a lot of personality and charm…

John DeFore (The Hollywood Reporter) on Washington’s and
Wahlberg’s performance:

Wahlberg shows more charm and vulnerability than he typically reveals in his action roles, playing Stig as a compulsive flirt with women but a romantic when it comes to bonds between men. Washington, dapper in a collection of sharp-brimmed hats, again finds ways to support a younger, white co-star, while remaining the most magnetic ingredient onscreen.

Jordan Hoffman (Screen Crush) on the bottom line:

“2 Guns”, starring the formidable Denzel Washington and the affable Mark Wahlberg, feels like the type of movie big stars make when they are in-between the projects they’ll end up being proud of. “2 Guns” isn’t terrible – it’s just rare to see a movie content with “agreeable in-flight entertainment” as its highest achievement.

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