Beverly Hills Cop II makes its arrival on 4K Ultra HD in celebration of the Eddie Murphy comedy marking its 35th anniversary.
The film was previously remastered on Digital in 4K UHD back in December 2019. All three films were subsequently released on Blu-ray in January 2020 but not in 4K. I’m expecting a similar physical release in 4K for when Beverly Hills Cop III marks its 30th anniversary in 2024. The 35th anniversary marks the film’s first physical release in the format. Just like the trilogy release in January 2020, the film does not arrive with any bonus features. The lack of bonus features are a real disappointment.
After directing Top Gun in 1985, filmmaker Tony Scott returned to helm the sequel to the hit 1984 comedy. Critics were mixed upon the film’s release. However, it still made money at the box office. By the end of the year, it was the top film at the domestic box office. Internationally, it was second only to another Paramount film, Fatal Attraction. Bob Seger’s “Shakedown” would also earn the film its only Oscar nomination.
Following Beverly Hills Cop, Paramount’s initial plan: a series starring Eddie Murphy. No interest from the actor put plan B into motion. The backup plan being a sequel, of course. This really is not much of a surprise. Why make a series when all the movie is in the movies? Back in the day, you would need at least 100 episodes before being able to make money in syndication. The initial plan would have seen Axel Foley in London or Paris but again, Eddie Murphy said no. As such, the setting would move to the US. The end result is basically a rehash of the first film. Eddie Murphy himself acknowledged that it wasn’t as funny as the predecessor. in an interview with Rolling Stone back in 1989.
Do you know what’s scary? Beverly Hills Cop II was probably the most successful mediocre picture in history. It made $250 million worldwide. Cop II was basically a rehash of Cop I, but it wasn’t as spontaneous and funny. But my pictures make their money back: No matter how I feel, for instance, about The Golden Child, the movie made more than $100 million.
When one looks at Murphy’s interviews around this period, it’s no wonder that the third film didn’t come until seven years later 1994. John Landis took over as director and if you’ve read Wild and Crazy Guys by Nick de Semlyen, you already know the history. In the same interview, Murphy even says that there is no reason to do a third film.
Axel Foley (Eddie Murphy) is back where he doesn’t belong, this time going “deep, deep, deep undercover” to stop a gang of international munitions smugglers. Also returning are Judge Reinhold and John Ashton as Murphy’s crime-busting sidekicks, ready to unleash blazing gunfire alongside rapid-fire gags.
DIRECTOR: Tony Scott
SCREENWRITERS: Larry Ferguson and Warren Skaaren
CAST: Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold, Jürgen Prochnow, Ronny Cox, John Ashton, Brigitte Nielsen, Allen Garfield, and Paul Reiser
Paramount released Beverly Hills Cop II in theaters on May 20, 1987.
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