Verdict: More like an episode of the series than a movie.
When you think of Baywatch, the first scene that comes to your mind is beautiful lifeguards in red swimsuits running in slo-mo along the beach. Of course, the show was more than that with these lifeguards also doubling up as officers and keeping their bay area safe from crime and saving people from drowning. The movie based on the show is directed by Seth Gordon who is known for Horrible Bosses. A good star cast, an intriguing villain and some good-ol‘ saving, this might be the perfect recipe for an enjoyable watch.
The movie starts with Mitch Buchannon, (Dwayne Johnson) closing shop for the day when he gets a Spidey-sixth-sense of an impending danger and we see a surfer in trouble due to oceanic wind currents. Mitch doesn’t hesitate and manages to save him. He then goes on a run where he apparently knows everyone and is a super friendly and a charming guy. We move forward to the next day where lifeguards are going to try out to be a part of the coveted Baywatch. Enters Matt Brody (Zac Effron) who apparently doesn’t feel the need to try out because he is a two-time Olympic Champion (fun tip: you can make a drinking game out of every time that is mentioned in the movie) and Mitch doesn’t leave any opportunity to call him names like One Direction, Justin Bieber and even High School Musical (another potential drinking game). Among the contenders who join as a trainee are also Summer Quinn (Alexandra Daddario) and Ronnie (Jon Bass). Ronnie’s motivation to join the team is C.J. (Kelly Rohrbach) who, like her namesake, nails the slo-mo run.
Once the team is assembled, enters the lady herself Victoria Leeds (Priyanka Chopra) who is suspected of running a drug operation under the guise of her new hotel. Mitch, as usual, is unconcerned about the authority and decides to bring an end to the drug operation much to Mike’s chagrin who just wants to handle the matter to the police. The trouble begins when a dead body appears.
The movie is filled with nostalgia and is much more like an extra-long episode than a movie. Many of the moments in Baywatch will definitely make you appreciate the changing times like the underdog getting the girl. Dwayne Johnson’s charm, Zac Effron’s body, and Priyanka Chopra’s mere presence cannot distract you from the fact there is so much potential in the movie. Victoria Leeds relies too much on her two henchmen while we know Priyanka is very much capable of handling action sequences.
Strange is also the way they have handled the cameos of David Hasselhoff and Pamela Anderson. Apparently, there are two CJs and two Mitch Buchannons and nobody thinks anything is amiss.
Why You Should Watch This Movie:
Baywatch is a great throwback to the show while trying to let you know what exactly was wrong with it in a fun manner. It is always fun to watch Dwayne Johnson. If you are a Priyanka Chopra fan, you definitely should not miss her Hollywood debut.