How to Watch All the “Bad Boys” Movies Before Seeing “Bad Boys: Ride or Die”

As 'Bad Boys: Ride or Die' releases in theaters, here's how to catch up on the franchise

<p>Frank Masi</p> Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 2024

Frank Masi

Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 2024's Bad Boys: Ride or Die

Will Smith and Martin Lawrence have a new kind of adventure through Miami in Bad Boys: Ride or Die.

The latest entry in the Bad Boys franchise, in theaters June 7, comes four years after Smith, 55, and Lawrence, 59, last reprised their roles as detectives Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett. At this point, the pair have been playing cops on the big screen for close to three decades: The original Bad Boys, directed by Michael Bay, released in theaters back in 1995.

Previous entries in the Bad Boys movies have featured Mike and Marcus taking on various forms of drug dealers and smugglers throughout Miami, but trailers for the new entry tease that the law enforcement officers themselves have to go on the run in Ride or Die after the death of their commanding officer Capt. Conrad Howard (Joe Pantoliano).

Read on for how to watch the previous Bad Boys movies — and a spinoff television series that starred Gabrielle Union's character, DEA agent Sydney Burnett — before seeing Bad Boys: Ride or Die.

Related: Will Smith Recreates Throwback Bad Boys Moment 29 Years Later: 'Long Time No See'

How to Watch Every Bad Boys Entry in Release Order

  • Bad Boys (1995)

  • Bad Boys II (2003)

  • L.A.'s Finest (series, 2019-2020)

  • Bad Boys for Life (2020)

The first three Bad Boys movies are all available to stream on Hulu, while the television spinoff L.A.'s Finest is streaming free on Tubi.

<p>Moviestore/Shutterstock</p> Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 1995's 'Bad Boys'


Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 1995's 'Bad Boys'

Bad Boys (1995)

In the original Bad Boys, Mike and Marcus are placed in charge of recovering millions of dollars of stolen heroin from their precinct's evidence room.

The plot thickens when Max, one of Mike's informants and a potential love interest, is murdered by a suspect after being hired as an escort; her friend Julie (Téa Leoni) survives the ordeal and makes contact with Mike and Marcus, starting a race to recover the stolen drugs and apprehend the men who killed Max.

Michael Bay made his feature directorial debut with the original Bad Boys after a number of years spent directing music videos. The movie's cast also featured Pantoliano, Michael Imperioli, Nestor Serrano, Julio Oscar Mechoso, Karen Alexander and Tchéky Karyo.

Bad Boys is streaming on Hulu and is available on demand.

<p>Robert Zuckerman/Columbia/Kobal/Shutterstock </p> Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 2003's Bad Boys II

Robert Zuckerman/Columbia/Kobal/Shutterstock

Martin Lawrence and Will Smith in 2003's Bad Boys II

Bad Boys II (2003)

In the sequel, audiences are introduced to Union's character Sydney Burnett, depicted as Marcus' younger sister and an undercover DEA agent investigating the flow of illegal drugs into Miami. The second movie, also directed by Bay, follows Mike and Marcus as their friendship struggles as Mike and Sydney also embark on a romantic relationship without Marcus' knowledge.

Jordi Mollà costars in the second Bad Boys entry as villain Hector Juan Carlos 'Johnny' Tapia, who takes Sydney hostage and brings the movie's climax to Cuba and the United States' naval base on Guantanamo Bay. The cast also features Michael Shannon, Peter Stormare, Theresa Randle and Jon Seda, among others.

Bad Boys II is streaming on Hulu and is available on demand.

<p>Columbia Pictures/Kobal/Shutterstock</p> Will Smith as Mike Lowery and Martin Lawrence as Marcus Burnett in 'Bad Boys for Life'.

Columbia Pictures/Kobal/Shutterstock

Will Smith as Mike Lowery and Martin Lawrence as Marcus Burnett in 'Bad Boys for Life'.

Bad Boys for Life (2020)

Smith and Lawrence returned to Miami in 2020 for Bad Boys for Life, which meets Mike and Marcus over a decade after the events of Bad Boys II.

Tired of living the police lifestyle, Marcus initially retires from the force before he is drawn back into conflict after Mike is ambushed and shot while the two spend time together off-duty. Mike spends significant time in the hospital and emerges bent on revenge, at which point he and Marcus reunite to take on mother-son villain duo Isabel (Kate del Castillo) and Armando (Jacob Scipio).

The third entry introduces new characters portrayed by Alexander LudwigVanessa Hudgens, Charles Melton and Paola Núñez, who will all appear in Bad Boys: Ride or Die as well. Directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah took over filmmaking duties from Bay on the third entry.

Bad Boys for Life is streaming on Hulu and is available on demand.

Sony Pictures Television Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba in LA's Finest
Sony Pictures Television Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba in LA's Finest

L.A.'s Finest (2019-2020)

More than a decade after Bad Boys II released, Union's character Sydney Burnett returned to the screen in L.A.'s Finest, a spinoff that sees Sydney take on a job with the Los Angeles Police Department after she leaves the DEA. In the series, which ran for two seasons on Spectrum, Union's character teams up with Jessica Alba's Nancy McKenna after joining the force.

Spectrum canceled the series in 2020 shortly after its second season premiered, Deadline reported at the time. Duane Martin, Zach Gilford, Ryan McParlin, Ernie Hudson and Sophie Reynolds also featured as main cast members.

L.A.'s Finest is available to stream free on Tubi and is also available on demand.

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