Only magic can happen when two comedy greats collab on a film project. And when Martin Lawrence and Eddie Murphy joined forces to work on the 1999 movie Life, it almost instantly became a classic. The film has been played in rotation on cable television networks, garnering new fans each time. It is the second film that Murphy and Lawrence worked on. The first was Boomerang, which was released in 1992. Life also stars several other comedians, including Bernie Mac, Anthony Anderson, and Guy Torry. It finally became available on streaming services thanks to Netflix and is already in the Top 10. Is currently is No. 7 overall and the No. 2 movie.
The film follows Harlem grifter Ray ( Murphy) and Claude (Lawrence) who team up on a bootlegging mission to Mississippi with the hopes of a big payday. They orchestrate the plot during the Prohibition era. Unfortunately, they find themselves in trouble when a crooked lawman hits them with a murder charge, despite them being innocent. Ray and Claude are sentenced to life in prison, where they work to prove their innocence while up against prison guards and several enemies. They struggle to stay united, with Claude placing much of the blame on Ray and Ray running into issues with other inmates. It follows Ray and Claude throughout the span of 60 years.
Life didn't make much money. The film grossed just $73 million against an $80 million budget. It received an Oscar nomination for Best Makeup at the 72nd Academy Awards. Audiences and critics alike loved the film.
"Life" is a heartfelt and touching movie that's also funny with character-based humor rather then heavy handed in-your-face comedy. Murphy and Lawrence, reunited for the first time since the 1992s "Boomerang," make a great team," a 1999 CNN review notes. "Lawrence is the straight-laced, straight man to Murphy's conniving con. Imagine "The Odd Couple" in prison uniforms. Their unlikely union results in warm, witty and sometimes hilarious moments."
Social media users are excited about the release. They've been sharing their joy online since the film became available for streaming.
"Watching Eddie Murphy and Martin Lawrence's "Life" again on Netflix, and I remember why I've seen this movie about 7 times already," one fan wrote. "If you haven't seen LIFE with Martin Lawrence and Eddie Murphy it's on Netflix. One of the best movies ever made," another wrote.