Even the Best needs to Rest…well, if they “absobloodylutely” wanted too!
Summit Entertainment in association with Di Bonaventura Pictures and DC Entertainment present…
This summer has been bombarded with comic book based adaptations left and right and “frankly” you just have to enjoy them while it lasts! A product of Homage Comics under the banner Wildstorm Comics and was later sold to DC Comics as part of negotiations with its owner Jim Lee! Created by Writer Warren Ellis and Artist Cully Hamner, the story followed the exploits of Paul Moses an ex-CIA Agent who was given a “wet works” team to retire him permanently! In retaliation, he informs his superiors that his GREEN status is now turned RED and the “monster” is going to tie loose ends!
Directed by Dean Parisot (Fun with Dick and Jane) who replaced last film’s Director David Schwentke he seemed to have pulled off this latest spy versus spy versus governments’ action comedy without making it too complicated in terms of its premise! Coming to an agreement with Summit Entertainment and bringing back the former Writers Jon and Erich Hoeber (Whiteout), they soon started production which landed them at Montreal while having to shoot some scenes in Moscow, Paris and London!
RED 2 kicks-off with Bruce Willis (The Expendables) as the main target of the show as usual Frank Moses! While doing his usual shopping, he unexpectedly bumps in with his old colleague (pun) John Malkovich (Being John Malkovich) is explosives expert sidekick, comedy man Marvin Boggs who warns him that people from the higher ups are again hunting them down! While Mary-Louise Parker (R.I.P.D.) as Sarah Moss playing the love interest of our reluctant hero who needs to tag along for obvious reasons! Still, the laugh trip duo as usual since the previous film, Mary-Louise can easily bring the child in her and prove that she can be an asset to the group, memorizing Russian one liners and still improve her “role playing” skills along the way!
The plot expands from here giving emphasis on the new mission or misadventure in hand! CIA’s very own “clean-up guy” Neal McDonough (Walking Tall) as the Agent with anger issues Jack Horton who was given instructions to take care of the “illegally” detained Moses and the fun part starts from here! Frank and the gang try to figure out each piece of the puzzle to come out of this dilemma alive, as we now bring you the rest of the players to convey the full story!
“Harry Potter” franchise alumni David Thewlis (American Perfekt) simply known as The Frog! The infamous information dealer that poisoned the Kremlin water supply using an Amazonian Frog was obviously not just adequate with amphibians but also a penchant for expensive wines, automatic machine guns and throwing knives! Just don’t come too close since he can put you down impeccably and can shoot you in sight if he wanted too!
The killer “kryptonite” makes her “Chicago” entrance! Academy Awards and BAFTA Winner Catherine Zeta Jones (Entrapment) she portrays counter intelligence operative Katya Petrakova! Her supporting take on the Russian was conveyed as part of the bigger picture as she was able to squeeze in the plot and to think she still needs to share the leading man with Mary-Louise! To add further, her accent was not convincing enough to begin with in spite of having sufficient screen time than Helen! Catherine may still be bankable in the industry although having fewer projects being offered due to competition; hopefully she can still come up with credible roles in the future.
Academy Awards and BAFTA Winner for Best Actress Helen Mirren (The Queen) as Victoria Winslow and Brian Cox (Bourne Identity) returns as well as ex-Russian secret agent Ivan Simanov. The Female Fatale Sniper and her resources lover have somewhat misplaced moments which rekindle their relationship showing how Ivan so much adores Victoria even when she is in a killing spree or placing someone’s head in the cross hairs!
Another Academy Awards and three time BAFTA Winner Anthony Hopkins (Mission: Impossible II) portrays Dr. Edward Bailey the “Da Vinci of Death”! Since jumping the comic book bandwagon from Marvel’s “Thor”, he now lends his talent with DC Comics! The smooth speaking Anthony can always deliver no matter the character, using his brains instead of brawn, he can overcome situations with the full-extent of technical precision and of severity; he even displayed his rare comedic side until he showed his true colors! While Byung Hun-Lee (G.I.JOE: Retaliation) plays opulent cream of the crop hitman Han Cho-Bai, he has known Frank for a long time as he was over eager to take on his former colleague just for payback! His take on the character was really similar coming off from another puppet assassin named “Storm Shadow”, impulsive and full of intensity as he can easily drop kick an opponent or a dozen which can be just an understatement, bottom-line Han just needs to choose which “millions” he needs to let go…
RED 2 was a good clean and wildly entertaining film with the tale of veteran agents trying to find some peace but can never escape their obligations from their past and to their country! The script was kind of thin but due to exceeding talent involved, its delivery was streamlined and commendable! Cool slow motion car sequences while hearing Chester Beddingfield’s scream was one of my favorite moments (Victoria can even give “The Baroness” a run for her money). Another aspect was using some animation just to compensate the comic book origins as they go through each country of destination which at least gives a unique take in the storytelling!
With the all star line-up, the sequel was more relatable this time since most of Frank’s cohorts returns while injecting some fan service in the process although it has the same formula in its genre. From hilarious moments compliments of Marvin and Sarah, the complex triangle love affair, an extraordinary supporting cast that gave the story more depth as they find their place to throw in some diversity with fight and action scenes combined with a twist that was kind of expected already but “extremely” fun nevertheless!