A genuinely funny revisitation of everybody’s favorite retired CIA agents.
Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) managed to survive the events of “RED”, and getaway with the girl (Mary-Louise Parker), but that doesn’t mean they’re home-free. As an ex-CIA operative, his past will always be out to get him. Sure enough, soon after encountering Marvin (John Malkovich) in a local Costco, he realizes that the agency is out to get him for information regarding a covert mission they undertook during the cold war to plant a weapon of mass destruction in the heart of Russia. Code-named “Nightshade”, this device is still active, and now the internet has learned of it. The agency fears someone else might get their hands on it, and wants to erase any loose ends regarding its existence.
That includes Frank Moses.
So Moses and his girlfriend Sarah hit the road, aided by Marvin, while the CIA call out some heavy hitters to track him down and kill him, including Han (Lee Byung-hun) an ex Korean special forces agent who has a past with Moses, and Victoria (Helen Mirren) a deadly MI6 agent who’s worked with Moses many times. So Frank and his crew will have to keep on their toes as they investigate “Nightshade” and attempt to diffuse the situation. Further complicating things is the arrival of one of Frank’s exes (Catherine Zeta-Jones), a Russian counter-intelligence agent who’s out to obtain Nightshade for Mother Russia. Throughout it all, he has to worry about not only protecting Sarah, but also making sure that she doesn’t get involved in the shooting and killing herself!
Will Frank Moses be able to survive? Will he be able to protect his girlfriend?
“RED 2” has one really strong attribute going for it that carries it all the way across the goal line in my opinion, and that’s a really great cast given really fun characters. As Frank Moses, over-protective boyfriend, Willis is more enthused than I recall seeing him in years. He’s given a great wingman in Malkovich’s spacey, burnt out Marvin… Malkovich steals every scene he’s in with his hysterical fried but wise persona. Helen Mirren shines again as the hyper-deadly Victoria, and we get supporting roles from Brian Cox and Anthony Hopkins as a Russian agent out to help, and the scientist who created Nightshade in the first place, respectively.
Together they all play in a fun sandbox where the rules of physics and logic aren’t totally suspended, but are bent enough to allow for outrageous car chases, shootouts and espionage. It establishes a light-hearted, humorous tone that really works set against all the killing and spying. The plot is rather slight, but its enough to give the characters a stage to play on. This is an action comedy with the emphasis on comedy. Between the over the top action, Malkovich’s spacey Marvin, and Mirren’s prim and deadly Victoria it seemed as if there was always something going on to make the audience laugh.
Light-hearted and fun, “Red 2” has an abundance of amusing moments and is sure to entertain.