Home Entertainment Axel F Takes Away Eddie Murphy’s Most Powerful Weapon

Axel F Takes Away Eddie Murphy’s Most Powerful Weapon


Some might say the biggest surprise here is the notion that anyone was clamoring for a fourth “Beverly Hills Cop” movie. This was clearly a concern for producer Jerry Bruckheimer, who, after wisely bailing on John Landis’s uninspired “Beverly Hills Cop III” (which was no party for Murphy), cycled through numerous scripts and one failed television pilot before settling on a screenplay credited to Will Beall, Tom Gormican, and Kevin Etten. In hiring director Mark Molloy (an advertising pro making his feature filmmaking debut here), Bruckheimer signaled a return to the high-style mayhem of Tony Scott’s “Beverly Hills Cop II,” a safe choice that, if nothing else, neatly complements the series’ glitzy locale.

As for how Axel Foley fits in our post-social media world where a teenage influencer from Duluth can seem as savvy as a spoiled Beverly Hills brat, the fish-out-of-water hook is no longer novel nor, frankly, applicable. Foley’s challenge now is bulls****ing his way through a world where bull**** is the coin of the realm and experience is nice, but hardly essential.

Molloy kicks off the film by having Foley, as is the franchise’s custom, cause a ruckus in his hometown of Detroit. Foley is still Foley, only this time his trail of Motor City destruction is a headache for the now promoted Chief Jeffrey Friedman (Paul Reiser, taking over for the late Gil Hill’s Inspector Todd). Initially, it appears that nothing has changed in Foley’s life. But we quickly learn that while he hasn’t grown out of his loose-cannon shenanigans, he has lived a life between sequels. And when he’s forced to confront this, he finds himself frighteningly, uncharacteristically at a loss for words.

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