There are some films that are based on comic books or graphic novels that most people have no idea. Some of those movies are Road to Perdition, From Hell, Ghost World, Red, and most shockingly of all was the Oscar-winning A History of Violence. Joing the ranks of those movies is 2 Guns, which is about two guys working undercover but neither of them know that until they're both framed for the same crime. It seems like the stuff of mid-winter garbage that studios put out just to keep something in the theater but shockingly...this was good.
Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg are two actors that have done spectacular things with their careers (ie: Glory, Training Day, Boogie Nights, The Fighter) and embarrassing things with their careers (ie: The Book of Eli, He Got Game, Max Payne, Shooter). Yet, for some reason they add a familar sense of calm while watching something that says you'll get your money's worth, which is why they were cast in this. Yes, they're both a little old for these type of shoot-em-ups but they can still pull it off despite starting to look like our dads.
2 Guns is as funny as it is exciting, maybe even more so. The quips between Denzel and Marky Mark are great and it makes their scenes nostalgic for Bruce Willis and Damon Wayans in The Last Boyscout or Danny Glover and Mel Gibson in the Lethal Weapon films. Unfortunately, they don't do every scene together and spend half the movie in seperate storylines and doing their own thing. Those scenes get boring quickly but make you enjoy their reunions even more.
Director Baltasar Kormakur has nothing to his credit of note except for a great Icelandic thriller called The Deep. Given the nature and tone of 2 Guns, I'm guessing the studio wanted the guy who used to handle these types of films who was Tony Scott, but he's dead now and I think Kormakur has proven that he's up to the challenge of filling those hit-or-miss shoes. His approach is aggressive but controlled, kinda like watching an Oliver Stone movie when he's taking his meds.
If you go see this (which I expect not very many people to do) go with low expectations. That seemed to highten my enjoyment of it much more. It's a victim of poor advertising that didn't do a good job of spotlighting its strengths and instead focused on the cliche, douchey imagery that's worked in the past. I mean, for God's sake, just look at that ridiculous poster! But it's a good film for the purpose its existence is meant to serve and for a late-summer release, it's one of the better surprises.