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Film Review – RED 2

2 min read

RED 2, the sequel to the surprise hit RED, takes the comedy of the first installment and ratchets up the action a notch or two. All the familiar characters are back (at least the ones who lived), plus a few more, as they trek across the globe in search of a cold-war era super-weapon before it gets into the wrong hands and blows up Moscow.

Just as Frank (Bruce Willis), is beginning to enjoy a quiet life with Sarah (Mary Louise Parker), she is getting restless for excitement. It isn’t long before Marvin (John Malkovich) shows up and trouble finds them.  Frank, believed to have some key information about the weapon from his CIA days, is set upon by a contract killer with a prior grudge, and also sharpshooter Victoria (Helen Mirren).  This leads them on an international chase through London, Paris, and Moscow where along the way they run into Frank’s smoldering old flam Katja (Catherine Zeta Jones), as well as an eccentric old scientist (Anthony Hopkins) who may hold the key to unlocking the mysteries of the device.

RED 2

The action is well-paced, and as we would expect, interspersed with comedic elements as the characters dole out relationship advice in the middle of the violence.  We get to know a little more about Frank and Sarah in this sequel, and though Frank can sometimes appear to have developed a softer side as he gets more settled down, it’s clear he hasn’t lost the hard exterior that makes him a dangerous killer. Sarah, on the other hand, feels a little threatened by Katja so she tries really hard to fit in with the spies, with some very funny consequences.

John Malkovich and Helen Mirren, who reprise their roles, are funnier than ever but Catherine Zeta Jones, who looks the part of a beautiful Russian spy, strangely doesn’t speak with a Russian accent. Nevertheless, the cast works well and help make RED2 a funnier, faster sequel that is more entertaining than the original.

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