Eddie Murphy’s Best Movie Is Free To Stream

Eddie Murphy's career-making Beverly Hills Cop is streaming for free on Pluto.

By Douglas Helm | Updated

Eddie Murphy beverly hills cop

Eddie Murphy has so many great projects to his name it can be pretty hard to pick his best one. Trading Places, Shrek, Dolemite is My Name, Dreamgirls, Mulan, and even his Saturday Night Live career could easily take the top spot. But if you’re a Beverly Hills Cop fan, FlixPatrol says that you can now check it out for free on Pluto.

Beverly Hills Cop is the perfect 1980s buddy-cop flick that features Eddie Murphy as street-smart Detroit cop Axel Foley, who heads to Beverly Hills to attempt to solve his friend’s murder. The film also stars Judge Reinhold, John Ashton, Ronny Cox, Lisa Eilbacher, Steven Berkoff, Paul Reiser, and Jonathan Banks. Martin Brest directs from a screenplay by Daniel Petrie Jr. and a story by Danilo Bach and Daniel Petrie Jr.

One of the reasons that Beverly Hills Cop is so revered in Eddie Murphy’s filmography is that it helped launch him into the stratosphere. Murphy had only been in a few films before this, and the franchise helped take his career to the next level. The film handily brought in $234 million at the North American box office, making it the highest-grossing film of the year in the US.

The Eddie Murphy comedy also received plenty of critical acclaim, including a nomination for Best Original Screenplay at the Academy Awards — a rare feat for a comedy film. However, this would be the peak of the franchise, as Beverly Hills Cop 2 and Beverly Hills Cop 3 weren’t quite the same success story. The second film was a box office success with mixed reviews while the third film failed on both fronts.

eddie murphy beverly hills cop

The fact is, we’re lucky that Beverly Hills Cop worked out the way it did. Before Eddie Murphy was eventually brought on board, the film went through some absolutely wild iterations. The role of Axel was initially offered to Mickey Rourke and both Martin Scorsese and David Cronenberg were approached with offers to direct.

Clearly, this would be a very different film, but none would have been as different as the iteration where Sylvester Stallone was set to play Eddie Murphy’s eventual role. The Stallone version of the film saw it go in a dramatic, straightforward action direction. Stallone said his version of the film ” looked like the opening scene from Saving Private Ryan” and that the end would feature Stallone facing off with a train in a Lambo.

Stallone pulled out of the project just a couple of weeks before filming because Paramount decided they didn’t want to fund his ideas, some of which he would eventually reuse in his film Cobra. Producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer would eventually convince Eddie Murphy to take on the role, and the rest is history. Interestingly, some other actors that were apparently up for the part of Axel included Richard Pryor, Al Pacino, James Caan, and Harrison Ford.

eddie murphy

Along with his great performance, we also partly have Eddie Murphy to thank for the end product because the final shooting draft of the film was revised with his input. In fact, the final shooting draft wasn’t even finished until the day production began. It’s not hard to imagine that Murphy would have found another breakout role down the line, but missing out on Beverly Hills Cop could have certainly changed the trajectory of his career.

Nowadays, Eddie Murphy is a massive star and Oscar-nominated actor. Also, he’s returning to the role that helped launch him into the stratosphere in the near future. Murphy is slated to appear in the fourth film in the franchise, currently titled Beverly Hills Cop: Alex Foley.

The fourth film in the franchise was picked up by Netflix, and Mark Malloy has been tapped to direct with Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec, and Will Beall serving as writers. Along with Eddie Murphy, familiar faces like Judge Reinhold, John Ashton, Paul Reiser, and Bronson Pinchot will also return. New cast members include Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kevin Bacon, Taylour Paige, James Preston Rogers, Damien Diaz, Joseph Aviel, Michael Camp, and Chantal Nchako.

There’s no official release date for Eddie Murphy’s new Beverly Hills cop film, so this is the perfect time to revisit the original. Especially since it’s free to watch right now. Make sure to check out Beverly Hills Cop on Pluto, and look forward to Murphy’s other upcoming projects, Triplets and Candy Cane Lane.