‘Bad Guys’ is only half bad


photo by Universal Pictures

Released in theaters April 22, “The Bad Guys” has a heartfelt theme but is too similar to other movies to be anything more than basic. This film follows Wolf (Sam Rockwell) and his friends, who are all criminals, as mayor Diane Foxington (Zazie Beetz) and Professor Marmalade (Richard Ayoade) try to help the group turn their life around.

Universal Pictures

Every family movie has some kind of message. “Beauty and the Beast” teaches not to judge a book by its cover, and “Finding Nemo” is about courage and the importance of family and friendship.

“The Bad Guys,” released in theaters April 22, has a great overall message, but too many parts of the movie fall short. This film follows Wolf (Sam Rockwell) and his criminal friends, who get help turning their lives around from mayor Diane Foxington (Zazie Beetz) and Professor Marmalade (Richard Ayoade) who try to help the group turn their life around. “The Bad Guys” has a heartfelt storyline, showing the heart in people who seem like they only do bad things and how doing good things makes someone feel good. 

Unfortunately, this movie was nothing different than any other movie where the bad guys turn good. When there is supposed to be suspense, viewers will catch themselves correctly screaming out what is going to happen. Every event has already been seen before in other movies that have the same storyline. With the exception of an end twist, every event from this movie has been seen before. 

Universal Studios films are known for their interesting and ‘out there’ character drawing styles which is different from the more cartoony look audiences are used to. The animation of “The Bad Guys” was different from a lot of kids’ movies. The animation is not typical, and it took a while to get used to, but once you did, it was nice to see a different take on animation.  As cheesy as the animation was, it reminded viewers of “Turning Red” because of its modern twist. 

This film’s best feature was its character choice. Shark (Craig Robinson) was a fan favorite with a great sense of humor and corny, but hilarious, jokes. In the beginning, Shark dresses up in a dress, high heels and makeup to disguise while the group is trying to steal something. When asked to create a distraction, Shark pretends to be going into labor. These types of scenes created a character all viewers can enjoy.

One question “The Bad Guys” leaves the audience wondering is why the main characters are all animals but everyone else is human. Although they are background characters, it still does not make any sense. 

This film is similar to popular kids movies like “Zootopia,” following a similar storyline about someone being not always who they seem. “Zootopia’s” storyline went more in depth about their characters and had a more unique twist to it though. “The Bad Guys” was good, but not as good as these films.

After being released from theaters, viewers can watch “The Bad Guys” on the NBC Universal streaming service,  Peacock, and eventually, Netflix. This film had a feel good storyline to it, but not enough to make it stand out from films with a similar plot. “The Bad Guys” may not be one that goes down in history, but is still a good movie for families to watch together or anyone to watch.