Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Men in Black II |
Actors: Tommy Lee Jones, Will Smith, Rip Torn, Lara Flynn Boyle, Johnny Knoxville
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Genres: Action & Adventure, Comedy, Science Fiction & Fantasy
The Superbit titles utilize a special high bit rate digital encoding process which optimizes video quality while offering a choice of both DTS and Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. These titles have been produced by a team of Sony ... more »
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K Follows J (but Not For Long)
Ole Yearian | San Francisco, CA USA | 07/04/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With tongue planted so firmly in cheek as to be in danger of serious injury, Barry Sonnenfeld set out to surpass his own 5 year old triumph with Men in Black II. He didn't quite clear the mark set by MiB, but he came much closer than I ever thought he could. Clearly, the goal of the MiB2 cast and crew was to expand the best elements of the first movie and lose those bits which didn't work so well. They had a great idea and implemented it well, but I think that they may have gone just a tad too far in paring the story and script down. MiB2 is a great ride, from the first frame to the last, and rarely have I seen 90 minutes go by so quickly. A little too quickly, as it turned out.This flick is even more densely packed with one-liners, droll humor, visual puns and delightfully cynical satire than the first. It opens with a segment from a no-budget TV series on strange and unexplained phenomena (hosted by Peter Graves, of course) describing how the Earth narrowly escaped destruction in 1978 when we were caught between Serleena, a powerful and evil alien, and the object of her desire, a mysterious force known as the Light of Zartha. At that critical juncture 25 years ago, a super-secret government agency (which licenses and polices alien activity on Earth) kept us out of the line of fire by refusing the Zarthans' request to hide the Light on Earth.Cut to the present day and Serleena's back. Naturally. She's still looking for the Light of Zartha and she's severely POed that she hasn't found it yet. Arriving on Earth undetected, her first problem is the same faced by the galactic cockroach in MiB: find a disguise that will pass among the primitve humans. As a shape shifting nest of snake-like apendages, though, she had an easier time of it than the 20 foot Bug. Almost immediately, she comes accros a magazine open to a full page Victoria's Secret ad and before you can say "brand new Edgar suit", she's taken the form of Lara Flynn Boyle . . . in nothing more than Victoria's best black lingerie. This is one dangerous alien.Actually, Boyle does a good job of filling Vincent D'Onofrio's shoes. She's a smarter (if less ghastly) villain than the Bug and before long has put J and K at a serious disadvantage by completely taking over MiB headquarters.Ah yes, Jay and Kay. Let's face it: the real key to the success of Men in Black was the hillarious juxtaposition of Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. Well, Kay is back and the chemistry has lost very little zing in the 5 years it was on the shelf. it turns out that the erstwhile Agent K is the only human being who might possibly know how to find the Light of Zartha. Unfortunatly, he's still got a 35 year gap in his memory and is working as the Postmaster of a small town in Maine. Zed dispatches J to bring him back and get him de-neuralized, post haste.I won't give away any more of the plot than this; it's thin enough as it stands and I wouldn't want to spoil what few surprises there are. Fortunatly, the movie isn't really about the plot, now is it? it's about the gags, the special effects and watching Smith and Jones have *way* too much fun. Several other characters from the first flick also return, including Tony Shalhoub as the occaisionaly headless pawnbroker Jeebs, the four ungrateful worm guys and the wisecracking, karaoke singing pug, Frank.Go see it, it's a hoot. The humor is a bit more juvenile than in the first movie, perhaps, but it really doesn't suffer much for all of that."
Gaz | Here, There. | 10/14/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"There is a sad fact about movies: If it makes money, it'll likely get a cashin sequel. Even remakes like Doctor Dolittle manage it - anything to bring in a few extra bucks. But when 5 years exist between original and sequel, surely it's not a case of acute cashin sequilitis?
Alas, yes. This movie took similar time to materialise to Star Wars Episode I... yet somehow, it still managed to add so very little to the excellent film that was Men In Black. Now there was a class act of a blockbuster. Decent effects, yes, but it boasted Tommy Lee Jones' fantastic restrained-yet-hilarious performance, delivering excellent lines with perfect speed; it had a decent script; and obviously it offered a new slant on the alien conspiracy theory idea. It was great, even ending with a lovely unnecessary but really effective existencial visual.
MIB2 falls flat on its face because, instead of saying "Hey, what more could happen with the Men in Black," they simply re-do the original film, albeit with less impact and a far-too-great sense of self mockery. The list of problems is as follows: The story is a virtual rewrite. "The Galaxy" is substituted for "The Light" (quite what said Light is, we are not told); The Bug is substituted for Serleena; The new/old agent theme is still present, albeit the roles are reversed; the story takes similar turns, though slower, with a similar (admittadly effective) ending visual of a similarly perspective-setting nature.
Next, Tommy Lee Jones. Before he was restrained and sardonic, for me the highlight of Men in Black... here, he simply looks bored for the duration of his scenes. Clearly just roped in for the cash, and to rescue an already bleak so-called "plot," he seems incapable of that lightning-fast delivery we were so gifted with last time. Will Smith dumbs down his character to seem ever inferior to Jones, which doesn't help his already "love him or hate him" fan status.
Then, there's the humour. Yes, there's one or two decent lines - the majority of them from Smith after neuralising someone - but there's simply too much of it. Everyone's playing for laughs, even Rip Torn's Z (in a cringe-inducingly awful karate scene), and there are pointless cameos from the likes of Michael Jackson (a wasted oppertunity) and Tony Shalhoub's Jeeves (who simply rehashes the head-shooting joke from the first movie). It tries so hard to amuse, it ends up a simple mockery of the whole concept. The other agents are feeble, one bursting into tears for no reason, the others cowering at the sight of Tommy Lee Jones' character. Humour is a good thing, but constant?
Lastly, there's the fact that it could actually have been really good. The film's only decent ideas (Jeffrey the Subway Worm; A super-fast multi-limbed postal worker; The Statue of Liberty neuraliser, etc) are ignored, forgotten or plain wasted. This is in line with various plot mistakes (the guy with two heads disappeared between scenes, not to be seen again) and just acts to annoy us that this film was so nearly a riot.
Why did it take 5 years to produce something we'd expect them to take 2 years to do? It's a tired cashin. Even Danny Elfman's music doesn't inspire, and armed with some hefty visuals (one or two actually coming off well, particularly the hilarious "race who live in a locker" scenes) it has the look of what it is: The "bigger, louder sequel" that accompanies ANY film these days.
It's a let down. Worse than that, it's so short that the action slugs along and takes a final mad dash in the closing reel. Do yourself a favour and stay happy with the far superior original."
A mediocre sequel to clever movie...
whirlbo | THE Ohio St. (cincinnati) | 11/13/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Seriously, are we supposed to put this movie the same class as the first one? This was a very Disney-like attempt to make money from a sequel.
Aside from a few clever one liners, a hilarious cameo by Michael Jackson, and the fact that Laura Flynn is very pleasing to the eye in Victoria Secret apparrel, this movie was really 'disapointing'
"But what about the scene stealing dog?" you say, ok the dog was funny in some points, mainly riding in the car. Ultimately I would say that if you laughed at the trailer, thats as much fun as you're gonna have.
A more appropriate title for this would've been "Burger King, Nokia, and Mercedes Benz present MIB 2!!" because its really a big commercial. It didn't exactly help that there were some very obvious 'product' shots thrown in which really get annoying after a while.
On the postive side, the team up of Jones and Smith is still funny, but ultimately you get the feeling of 'I've seen all this before.' To those who haven't seen it, I would say 'see it, if its a rental that someone else is paying for because they ran out of copies of something you would want to see, like oh I don't know: Episode II."
The MIB return to kick more alien tail
David Roy | Vancouver, BC | 07/10/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I really enjoyed Men in Black. I thought the relationship between J & K (Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones) was wonderful. Tommy plays a wonderful straight man to Smith's zaniness.I went to see Men in Black II last week, and I found that it fit like a thoroughly used, but still kind of comfortable glove. It's nowhere near as good as the first one, and it suffers from recycling too many of the jokes as well. The talking dog returns in a much more prominent role, the worms are back as well and have more to do. While funny (listening to the dog sing Gloria Gaynor is hilarious), ultimately they don't work as well in expanded roles. It feels almost like running the joke into the ground. A much more successful return is the ever-wonderful Tony Shalhoub as Jeebs. He's in for one scene, but he's still great.Lara Flynn Boyle completely fails, in my opinion, as Serleena. First, she doesn't play menacing very well. Secondly, she doesn't seem to handle the wry humour and the quips that a villain in a picture like this requires. She comes across as very flat. Thankfully, Rip Torn is wonderful, and Jones and Smith slip into their comfortable roles very easily. They really make the movie.The film is very short (88 minutes), which also tends to make it seem rushed. The characters jump from place to place without much reason. When reason is given, it's usually very quickly so as to move the plot along to the next set piece. It was a funny film. No doubt about that. It was worth the [money] that I paid for it. Just don't go in expecting something as good as the first one."