A few years ago, RED, a film based on the DC graphic novel by Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner, snuck into theaters. It was a film about a group of retired killers (Retired, Extremely Dangerous) who are forced out of retirement to do one last mission. It was a charming, action packed yet hilarious ride. The film finished with Bruce Willis’ Frank Moses wanting to settle down with his recently acquired civilian girlfriend Sarah.
Cue RED 2 which picks up where RED left off, with Frank trying to provide Sarah with a safe domestic life. Sarah secretly harbours a need for some of the action that thrust her into Franks arm. Enter Marvin (played with equal parts deadpan and lunacy by the always good John Malkovich) who tried to tell Frank that there lives are in danger because someone leaked some confidential files onto the internet. But with Frank not listening, Marvin has to fake his own death.
Soon Frank, Sarah and Marvin are on the run from a cold blooded killer sent by the CIA, the Russians headed up by Franks old flame, and the British.
Whilst RED 2 may not live up to the original – due mainly to our high expectations than anything lacking in the film – it is just as fantastically action packed and lovable. The focus – other than the suitable absurd plot – is on Sarah and her relationship with Frank. Marvin keeps the fun humming along offering up relationship advice, and newcomer to the series, South Korean star Byung Hun Lee adds a big dose of freshness as a hit man hired to take out Frank.
If you love action pared with over the top fun, RED 2 is the ticket for a great night out.
Rating: M Violence & offensive language.