- Alternate Character Interpretation: In the first movie, Jack is a dangerous, racist, rogue cop who will do anything murder a criminal.
- Awesome Music: The score by James Horner.
- Complete Monster: Albert Ganz is a viciously homicidal criminal who loves nothing but money and killing cops. In the movie's beginning he escapes from prison with the help of his henchman Billy Bear, killing some guards in the process. He kidnaps the girlfriend of his former partner Luther in order to force him to give him some hidden money from a former robbery, threatening to put holes in her you never even thought of if he should fail. During a shootout with the first two cops to track him down, Ganz kills one of them and injures the remaining one. He takes a woman hostage and orders Cates, who was backing up the other cops, to hand him his own gun. Once Cates obliges, Ganz uses the gun to kill the wounded cop and then tries to kill Cates as well. Even after Luther brings him the money Ganz kills him for having asked his girlfriennd if she's all right (he says "I told you I wouldn't hurt her"). In the final showdown, he uses his ex-accomplice Reggie as a Human Shield, clearly willing to kill him along with Cates, just for personal satisfaction.
- Contested Sequel: Another 48 Hrs...
- Genre Turning Point: This movie more or less invented the buddy cop/mismatched partners plot that has become become prevalent in Hollywood movies today. Director Walter Hill would also revisit the genre with Red Heat, this film's sequel Another 48 Hrs. and Bullet to the Head.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: Eddie Murphy's first appearance in a feature film is him horrifically warbling "Roxanne." He would soon try to create a legit music career, and sort of succeeded with "Party All the Time."
- Retroactive Recognition: Jonathan Banks is one of the two cops who get killed.
- Production Posse: The actors who play Ganz, Luther and the attendant at the garage where Reggie left his car all had significant roles in Hill's earlier Cult Classic, The Warriors.
YMMV / 48 Hrs.