• Bad Boys: Ride or Die
    is rated R, continuing a tradition established by Michael Bay’s original 1995 movie.
  • R-rated humor and violence has been crucial to the
    Bad Boys
    franchise’s success.
  • A PG-13 rating likely would have alienated the franchise’s core audience.

Bad Boys: Ride or Die‘s age rating is in, and it continues a longstanding franchise tradition. After the success of 2020’s Bad Boys For Life, directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah return to helm the upcoming sequel, which continues the story of Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence). Bad Boys: Ride or Die‘s story follows Mike and Marcus as they attempt to clear their own names and restore the legacy of their late captain, with trailers promising lots of hard-hitting action. now reveals that the MPA has given Bad Boys: Ride or Die an R rating for “strong violence, language throughout and some sexual references.” As seen in the chart below, the R rating continues a franchise tradition that has been in place since Michael Bay’s 1995 original movie. The specifics of the rating, however, vary slightly with each installment.




Bad Boys (1995)


Intense violent action and pervasive strong language.

Bad Boys II (2003)


Strong violence and action, pervasive language, sexuality and drug content.

Bad Boys For Life (2020)


Strong bloody violence, language throughout, sexual references and brief drug use.

Bad Boys: Ride or Die (2024)


Strong violence, language throughout and some sexual references

Bad Boys 4’s R Rating Is Good News

The Franchise Has Always Mixed R-Rated Comedy & Violence

The Bad Boys franchise is now well known for a few key ingredients. The strong chemistry between Smith and Lawrence is a major reason behind the franchise’s success, and the two actors are responsible for much of the movies’ humor. This humor has always been distinctly R-rated, with Mike and Marcus frequently swearing and making somewhat crude remarks alongside the rest of the Bad Boys cast.


How Much Will Smith & Martin Lawrence Were Paid For All 3 Bad Boys Movies

Will Smith & Martin Lawrence made quite a bit of money for their portrayals of Det. Burnett and Det. Lowry in the wildly popular Bad Boys franchise.

The violence, too, however, is a core part of Bad Boys’ DNA. The three previous movies don’t take themselves too seriously, and Bad Boys: Ride or Die is said to be more on the comedy end of the spectrum, but the action is never restrained. Bad Boys For Life, for example, features plenty of bloody shootouts, and one scene even depicts a bad guy getting impaled by a forklift, with little left to the imagination.

Bad Boys For Life
is currently available to stream on Hulu.

If the upcoming sequel had instead opted for a PG-13 rating, it may have helped get younger audiences into theaters, but it also may have alienated the franchise’s core fanbase. Expendables 3 tried this same tactic, and that sequel was a major disappointment. Many questions remain about how the story will continue after the emotional Bad Boys For Life ending, but Bad Boys: Ride or Die is now confirmed to have one core ingredient for success.


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