Beverly Hills Cop Axel f Review

The long-awaited fourth film in Eddie Murphy’s series released on Netflix rather than in theatres. While sequels on streaming platforms typically imply the end of quality control, “Axel F” is a shockingly delightful diversion, the greatest in the series since the film that helped Murphy become one of the biggest performers of his generation.

Eddie Murphy’s return to his renowned Detroit officer Axel Foley from the Beverly Hills officer action-comedy trilogy that made Murphy an exploding Hollywood celebrity 40 years ago – and whose snappy Axel F theme became an 80s hymn, properly resurrected here – feels a little stale and repetitive. He’s back for the fourth film, leaving his Detroit turf to be a scruffy fish out of water in the hilariously chi-chi world of Beverly Hills, once again wryly noticing from the wheel of his car, on the way in, a montage of all the crazy California stuff, including a car registration plate reading PRE-NUP.

Axel’s grown-up lawyer daughter Jane (Taylour Paige) is in Beverly Hills, threatened by a corrupt cop conspiracy that may include flinty-eyed, suit-wearing Captain Grant (Kevin Bacon) – and once again, among other franchise old-timers, Axel runs into his old BHPD cop pals Billy (Judge Reinhold) and John (John Ashton), who has supposedly retired, then unretired, and returned as chief. They have a laid-back approach towards retiring, similar to the Detroit police department and the Miami police, which employs bad boys Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.

Murphy engages in wacky chases in a snowplough, a traffic control vehicle, a golf cart, and a helicopter, as well as the time-honored moments in which he fools different pretentious or useless club doormen and security gatekeepers into letting him in. It’s still humorous when Murphy uses his “white people” voice, which was previously a comedy trademark. But, like Murphy’s Coming to America, this feels a little old, and a mature guy like him can’t play the subversive anarchist comic vibe in the same way he did. Murphy could still perform comedy or drama with the appropriate script, but this relies heavily on the audience’s brand loyalty.


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