Monday, July 22, 2013

Red 2 (Confirmed: Crap and a 1/2)

Red 2 may have you seeing RED!

     Back in 2010 Hollywood seemed to have a fascination with teams of ex-paramilitary personnel going against the rules in order to accomplish insane missions with unbelievably high stakes.  As a result, four movies all centering around the same premise were released that year: The Losers, The A-Team, The Expendables, and Red.  Out of the four The Expendables franchise has enjoyed the most success, already spawning a bigger and better sequel last summer on the backs of Sly Stallone and his pals.  This summer it was Red that got the sequel treatment bringing back the entire original cast left intact after the first film in addition to newcomers Catherine Zeta Jones, Anthony Hopkins, and GI Joe star Lee Byung-hun.  So did the most refreshing of those four 2010 action films produce a quality sequel? Find out after the break.....


Even being John Malkovich isn't enough to save Red 2!

      The original Red was such a refreshing film because unlike the other 2010 action flicks mentioned above, it never took itself too seriously; overall it established itself as a true action comedy and played well within the rules of that genre.  Too bad we can’t say the same thing about Red 2! Despite the efforts of John Malkovich’s impeccable comedic timing, it is hard to enjoy Red 2 as an action comedy when the film boasts an unreasonably high body count, a mass shooting, and repeated execution style killings.  If audiences truly like these horrific acts mixed into their action comedies, it truly is a sad day for cinema.

Washed up action star, meet the funny chick!

      What makes Red 2 such a tragic failure was that it goes against everything that made the first film so unique from others of its type. While films like The Expendables are enjoyable in and of themselves, in so many ways Red was the anti Expendables, relying more on witty comedy within action situations rather than classic action film tropes.  But tropes are used ad nauseam within this film- for real, I think it’s time Hollywood put the ticking time bomb technique on hold for at least a couple of years or audiences might explode!

The true actions stars of Red 2: Lee Byung-hun and Helen Mirren 

     While Red 2 may be a failure on a tonal, writing, and directing level, the results were not all bad.  John Malkovich’s brilliance has already been mentioned, and Helen Mirren, just like usual, can produce a strong performance no matter the situation she is put in. As for Mary Louise Parker, she served her purpose as the stereotypical funny chick efficiently enough. Also hidden within Red 2 is a performance by academy award winner Anthony Hopkins who played the cliché mad scientist character about as lazily as he could in order to collect a paycheck.  The biggest positive that came out of Red 2 was the performance of Lee Byung-hun: at multiple points in the film he preformed stunts that make you realize just how lazy of an action star Bruce Willis has become, who with the exception of Looper hasn't been that good in a film in quite some time!

Confirmed: CRAP and a 1/2


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