2 Guns is a 2013 American action comedy film directed by Baltasar Kormákur and starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg. Based on the comic book series of the same name created by Steven Grant and Mateus Santolouco, published in 2007 by Boom! Studios. The film was released in the United States on August 2, 2013, and was met with mixed reviews from critics. It marks Denzel Washington's first American comedy film since the 1996 Christmas comedy film The Preacher's Wife.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Baltasar Kormákur|
|Screenplay by||Blake Masters|
|Based on||2 Guns|
by Steven Grant
|Music by||Clinton Shorter|
|Edited by||Michael Tronick|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$131.9 million|
Criminals Robert "Bobby" Beans (Denzel Washington) and Michael "Stig" Stigman (Mark Wahlberg) are questioned by the United States Border Patrol after a meeting with drug lord Manny "Papi" Greco (Edward James Olmos) in Mexico. Unknown to Stig, Bobby is an undercover DEA agent named Bobby Trench and reports to his superior, Jessup (Robert John Burke), that he failed to acquire cocaine from Papi that they could use as evidence to convict him.
Against Jessup's orders, Bobby decides to remain undercover and assist Stig in robbing $3 million - stashed in the vault of the Tres Cruces bank - from Papi, so they can prosecute Papi for money laundering. Bobby has a rendezvous with fellow DEA agent and former lover, Deb Rees (Paula Patton), who is also seeing another man, while Stig, an undercover enlisted Intelligence Specialist with the Navy SEALs, meets with his commanding officer, LCDR Harold Quince (James Marsden), who instructs Stig to kill Bobby so the Navy can use the stolen money to fund unauthorized covert operations.
During the heist, Bobby and Stig are surprised to find $43.125 million in the vault instead of the expected $3M. After the heist, Stig follows orders to betray Bobby and escape with the money, managing to pull his gun right as Bobby is about to pull his own. Unwilling to kill Bobby, Stig wounds Bobby in the shoulder, and then sees Bobby's DEA badge. Not sure what to think of Bobby, he leaves Bobby behind in the desert and leaves with the money. Stig meets with Quince, and after learning what happened, Quince attempts to have Stig killed. Stig escapes after learning the money will be transferred to a Navy base in Corpus Christi. Meanwhile, a man named Earl (Bill Paxton) aggressively interrogates the Tres Cruces bank manager about the stolen money and also questions the vet who treated Bobby's wounds as he tracks Bobby's movements.
However, Bobby goes to Stig's apartment to find out where he took the money, only to have Stig contact him from a sniper's post across the street. A hit squad sent by Quince attacks the apartment but Bobby and Stig escape. Bobby visits Jessup to tell him what happened, but Earl and his men are there waiting for him. Earl kills Jessup, frames Bobby for the murder and lets him go, making a deal that if Bobby returns the $43 million he will be cleared.
Bobby and Stig kidnap Papi and interrogate him in the garage at Deb's house. They find out Earl is a black ops operative to whom Papi reports, and that the money they stole was from payments to the CIA. The CIA has strong armed Papi, as well as other cartels, into paying a 10% cut in exchange for using CIA planes to help smuggle product across the Border. The garage is attacked by another hit squad, led by Quince. Bobby, Stig, and Deb escape, but so does Papi, who calls his crew. All three end up being captured by Papi, and taken to his farm in Mexico. After beating them and receiving a visit from Earl, Papi gives the pair 24 hours to steal the money from the Navy and return it to him, or Deb will die.
At the base, Bobby infiltrates Quince's office, only to discover Quince is Deb's boyfriend, and they had planned to steal the money for themselves. Meanwhile, Stig asks Admiral Tuway (Fred Ward) for help. Tuway orders Quince's arrest, but disavows Stig to prevent the scandal from tarnishing the Navy's reputation. Quince evades arrest, as does Stig. Unable to find the money, Bobby is too late to prevent Papi from killing Deb. He later realizes that the money is in a motel room that he and Deb frequented and goes to help Stig, who had returned to Papi's farm alone to exact vengeance.
There, Stig is surrounded by Papi's men until both Quince and Earl intervene. Bobby arrives in a car filled with money, and then blows up the car, scattering the money everywhere, which leads to a massive shootout. During a standoff among Quince, Earl, Bobby, and Stig, Earl reveals that the CIA has 20 other secret banks, and the loss of the $43.125 million is only a minor setback. Signaling Stig with a phrase from an earlier conversation, Stig shoots Earl, and Bobby shoots Quince. Bobby and Stig kill Papi and the duo escapes, but not before Bobby shoots Stig in the leg as payback for shooting him in the desert. While planning to continue to take down the CIA's secret banks and sabotage their black operations, Bobby reveals to Stig that he did not blow up all the money and had some stashed away.
- Denzel Washington as DEA Special Agent Robert "Bobby" Trench
- Mark Wahlberg as USN Petty Officer Michael "Stig" Stigman
- Paula Patton as DEA Special Agent Deb Rees
- Bill Paxton as Earl
- James Marsden as USN Lieutenant Commander Harold Quince
- Fred Ward as USN Rear Admiral Tuwey
- Edward James Olmos as Manny "Papi" Greco
- Robert John Burke as DEA Special Agent Jessup
- Patrick Fischler as Dr. Ken
The film is an adaption of the comic series of the same name by Steven Grant. However, it has been noted by the Observer that it can also be seen as evocative of the 1973 thriller Charley Varrick. The pictures have similar plots and in both cases the bank being robbed is in Tres Cruces, New Mexico.
Filming took place in New Orleans, Louisiana and areas throughout New Mexico. While filming in Louisiana, the production spent $57.5 million in the state and received a $17.6 million subsidy under the state's film incentive program. 2 Guns marked the second collaboration for Wahlberg and Kormákur: they first worked together on the film Contraband. It also marks the second collaboration between Washington and Patton after having starred together in Déjà Vu.
On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 64% based on 183 reviews, with an average score of 6.02/10. The site's consensus reads, "Formulaic and often jarringly violent, 2 Guns rests its old-school appeal on the interplay between its charismatic, well-matched stars." Metacritic gave a score of 55 out of 100 based on 43 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
Ben Kenigsberg of The A.V. Club gave the film a C+ rating, describing it as "the no-frills action, half-pint Jim Thompson scenario, and buddy-cop wisecracks". Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian gave the film 2 out of 5 stars. R. Kurt Osenlund of Slant Magazine gave the film 2 out of 4 stars. "It's noticeably odd that 2 Guns has the desire to make offhanded socio-political statements, but not the will to take them anywhere truly provocative," he wrote. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone also gave the film 2 out of 4 stars, commenting that the film didn't make the extra effort. Lisa Kennedy of Denver Post gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, writing that "the biggest guns this action flick brandishes are stars Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg who have very different acting styles that work surprisingly well together".
The film grossed $75,612,460 in North America and $56,327,951 in other countries, with a $131,940,411 worldwide gross against a budget of $61 million, having debuted at the top of the box office with $27,059,130 in its first weekend.
- "2 Guns". American Film Institute. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
- "2 GUNS (2013)". bbfc.co.uk. British Board of Film Classification. June 8, 2013. Archived from the original on August 31, 2013. Retrieved August 31, 2013.
- "2 Guns (2013)". Box Office Mojo. Internet Movie Database. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
- "Production notes" (PDF). 2guns.net. Universal Studios. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- "Kick-Ass 2, 2 Guns Get New Release Dates; R.I.P.D. Holds Firm in 3D". ComicBook.com. Retrieved March 26, 2013.
- "Fred Ward Joins Denzel Washington And Mark Walhberg In 2 Guns". CinemaBlend.com. Retrieved October 23, 2012.
- French, Philip (August 18, 2013). "2 Guns – review". The Observer. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
- "'2 Guns', starring Mark Wahlberg, filming in New Mexico". Onlocationvacations.com. Retrieved October 23, 2012.
- "2013 Feature Film Production Report". FilmL.A. March 6, 2013. Archived from the original on October 20, 2016. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
- "2 Guns". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 18, 2019.
- "2 Guns". Metacritic. Retrieved August 18, 2013.
- Kenigsberg, Ben (August 1, 2013). "2 Guns - Film - Movie Review". The A.V. Club.
- Bradshaw, Peter (August 15, 2013). "2 Guns - review". The Guardian.
- Osenlund, R. Kurt (July 31, 2013). "2 Guns - Film Review". Slant Magazine.
- Travers, Peter (August 1, 2013). "2 Guns". Rolling Stone.
- Kennedy, Lisa (August 2, 2013). ""2 Guns" movie review: Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg are a new breed of buddy cops". The Denver Post.