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The Boston Globe

Movies

Movie review

McCarthy, Bullock put life into buddy cop boys club

If you’re going to make a dopey, bawdy, foul-mouthed, predictable lady-buddy-cop movie, you might as well make it funny. And until it overstays its welcome in the final half-hour, “The Heat” is shamefully funny. Also, if you’re inclined to consider any movie that stars both Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy — yes or no, you know where you stand — see this one in a theater with a game and tickled crowd. The movie’s a retread, but someone has gone to the trouble of filling it with fresh dirty air.

Katie Dippold’s screenplay plays to the stars’ established schticks: Bullock’s Ashburn is a prissy klutz of an FBI agent, sent to Boston to bring down a drug lord. McCarthy’s Mullins is a loose-cannon slob of a city cop who knows the local players. If this sounds like formula, it unabashedly is: From the 1970s typeface of the opening credits to the waka-waka sound of the Isley Brothers’ “Fight the Power,” “The Heat” frankly channels every action-comedy of the last 35 years. Especially “Lethal Weapon” and “Beverly Hills Cop.” It just does it with women in the lead.

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