An unlikely sequel to a debatable first serving, RED 2 (RED stands for Retired Extremely Dangerous) is a tableau for actors who ought to gracefully retire or stay in hiding after terrible cosmetic surgery.
Described as an action comedy, RED 2 follows retired special ops agent Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) as he is forced out of a boring domestic existence to join partner-in-arms Marvin (John Malkovich) to clear their names and unearth a secret plot codenamed Nightshade. This time Moses carries some excess baggage in the shape and form of bimbo girlfriend Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) as they traverse continents in order to avert a nuclear tragedy and find the mad scientist behind Nightshade.
But jetlag is the least of their problems as they zip between London, Paris and Moscow. Ruthless assassins with a heavyduty arsenal of state of the art arms are on their tail. Some happen to long-time associates, such as Victoria (Helen Mirren), Katja (Catherin Zeta-Jones) and even Han (Byung-hun Lee).
Based on the DC comic books, RED 2 is absurd, silly and over-the-top. And sometimes the skill and wit of these agents is seriously questionable. For instance, when they find the incarcerated scientist and are duped by him as he inveigles his way out of the cell, leaving them locked up instead!
RED 2 is neither an all out satisfying action film and certainly not glib enough to pass off as a comedy. Parker and Willis look well passed their respective sell-by dates leaving most of the class act up to Mirren and Malkovich. Unless you are a die-hard (pun not intended) fan of one of the cast, give this one a pass.