Buddy cop film

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The "buddy cop" is a subgenre of buddy films and crime films with plots involving two men of very different and conflicting personalities who are forced to work together to solve a crime and/or defeat criminals, sometimes learning from each other in the process. The two men are normally cops, but some films, such as 48 Hrs. (cop and an ex-con), that are not about two cops may still be referred to as a buddy cop film, or as a member of a larger genre known as buddy films.

Frequently, although not always, the two heroes are of different ethnicity or cultures. However, regardless of ethnicity, the central difference is normally that one is "wilder" than the other: a hot-tempered iconoclast is paired with a more even-tempered partner. Often the "wilder" partner is the younger of the two, with the even-tempered partner having more patience and experience. These films sometimes also contain a variation on the good cop/bad cop motif, in which one partner is kinder and law-abiding, while the other is a streetwise, "old school" police officer who tends to break (or at least bend) the rules. Another frequent plot device of this genre is for one of the men be removed from his natural element: sometimes in a foreign country or new city, a "desk jockey" used to paperwork being forced into the field, or a rookie or non-cop partner who is unfamiliar with police work. When this is done, the other man acts as a guide to the unfamiliar.

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