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Month of Superhero Film Reviews 2: Men In Black 2

Howdy people of the north, south, east and west, and welcome to Day #6 of Month of Superhero Film Reviews 2! During this month I’ll be reviewing of some of the best, average and worst comic book adapted films. After reviewing Men In Black yesterday, I decided why not continue with the sequel, Men In Black 2.

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So MIB 2, the sequel not liked by many fans or critics. I actually didn’t see this film until 2005 and after all the hate that it’d gotten I was surprised by how much I liked it and back in my teenage years I used to watch this film a lot of DVD (mainly because I didn’t own the first film). But its been ages since I saw it last time so I was curious to see how it held up.

The story can be summed up as the following:

“Agent J must bring Agent K back from retirement when the evil Kylothian, Serleena comes to Earth looking for the Light of Zartha, a source of great power that could destroy the entire Earth if it doesn’t leave the planet soon.”

The story in this film is a decent one full of interesting mythology when it comes to the M.I.B.’s history and development of Agent K’s history with this organization, however it is definitely a step down from the last outing. While the stakes are higher and the danger is at the forefront of the film, it just felt like the quality in the storytelling got weaker. Jokes weren’t as funny, the story felt a little muddled and a lot of the time the film felt like a rehash of the last one except with some role reversal stuff for Agents K and J and some slightly different dangerous circumstances for Earth’s destruction. Oh and the film just has a very silly and wacky nature about it that takes away from some of the more serious and dramatic elements. That being said I still found this story to be quite charming, funny and there are some wonderful emotional moments sprinkled throughout the film that make the relationships between some of the characters really special.

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Now let’s talk about the cast. Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K/Kevin Brown is great. It is interesting to see K having a normal life and adjusting to this former life he used to know, but it is also great to see him get back into his MIB groove and be the same humorless, grumpy and witty man we know him as, and Jones is lovely. Will Smith returns to great effect as Agent J/James Darrell Edwards III, this film is definitely more of the Agent J show with him becoming more seasoned as an Agent and having to show K everything that he used to know. While it does feel like Smith is just going a bit overboard with his material, overall he’s still really funny and awesome. Even though some of the humour doesn’t always work, for the most part Jones and Smith are just as good together as they were before, their banter and overall chemistry make this film work.Lara Flynn Boyle as Serleena, damn. I know this is a generic guy thing to say, but Serleena is frigging hot yo, but it also helps that she’s confident, aggressive and cheeky. Johnny Knoxville as Scrad & Charlie, erm, I wasn’t too keen on them. While there are a few moments where I chuckled, ultimately these two were just weird, annoying and their presence was just distracting and unnecessary. Rip Torn returns as Chief Zed and he was just as fun as he was before with some great dialogue and more screen time.

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Rosario Dawson is lovely as Laura Vasquez, Laura is the sweet and innocent lady who just happens to be at the of the crisis and she has some really good moments with Agents J and K. Dawson, is such a pretty lady and it also helps that performance is the right balance of sweet, sad and funny too. Tim Blaney as Frank the Pug is lovely, it is interesting to see this character get more screen time and moments in the spotlight, Blaney’s voice work for Frank is great as he’s so talkative, strange and funny. Patrick Warburton as Agent T is awesome, the dude is a dumb as bricks but is so funny that you can’t help but love him. Warburton is one of those actors you just can’t dislike and he does a good job in this film. Tony Shalhoub is once again pretty great as Jack Jeebs , he has some really good moments in this film and seeing David Cross return as Newton is great as he provides some good moments of humour in the film. Oh and the cameo from Michael Jackson as Agent M, frigging awesome, it is so random and odd but so jokes at the same time.

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Now let’s talk about the presentation. Visually the film is really good, the practical effects for the aliens still look really detailed and fancy, and the use of CGI for all of the fancy-looking aliens and big action set pieces are great, though I feel like there was an over abundance of CGI here and it made the film feel a little less realistic. But I have to give a shout out to the visual effects people from crafting all of those crazy alien designs. As for the soundtrack, Danny Elfman returns and does such a brilliant job crafting a score that is  just as fun, sassy and full of style and charm. Elfman retains all of the themes from the last film but creates some new ones and somehow finds a way to make the music even more energetic and upbeat.

And lastly how does it compare to the comics? Like I stated in the MIB1 review I’ve never read any of the original comics so I unfortunately can’t comment on it at this point in time.

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So to conclude Men In Black 2 is still a decent film, it has a serviceable story, great performances again from Smith and Jones and has some pretty sweet action sequences. That being said it definitely felt like a disappointing follow-up the 90’s classic with not so funny jokes, a lot of CGI and not so interesting story. I don’t like this film as much as I used to but it’s not a total waste.

Rating: 6.5/10

That’s 6 reviews done, only 24 more to go. So have you seen Men In Black 2 and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews 2: Men In Black

Howdy people of the north, south, east and west, and welcome to Day #5 of Month of Superhero Film Reviews 2! During this month I’ll be reviewing of some of the best, average and worst comic book adapted films. Today I’m going to be talking about another great film from the 90’s, Men In Black.

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So now we come to another one of my all-time favourite nostalgic films from my childhood. Men In Black, when that film came out it was a really popular and well-received film. And after the two sequels this one remains the best because of its originality, humour and great cast. I’ve always wanted to review this film since 2012 and thanks to this current blog series I have a reason to do it. 🙂

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The story can be summed up as the following:

“Unbeknownst to the public, there is a secret organization known as the Men In Black and they are tasked with the surveillance of extra terrestrial activity. When a “Bug” alien crash lands on earth and is on the hunt for the power source called “The Galaxy”, Agents J and K must stop the bug before it can escape with the galaxy.”

The story is very good full of humour, good sci-fi action and some great character moments too. This film mainly works because it knows how strange it is, but gives reasoning for the setting, story and characters, and besides some serious moments, this film is primarily a comedy and luckily it is hilarious. What I really love about this film is the whole concept of the M.I.B., how they are like this film’s equivalent of Marvel’s S.H.I.E.L.D., except these guys are super secretive, have memory erasers, procedures for the aftermath of an alien-related incidents and the list goes on. It is such an interesting and bizarre world that these people operate in and its made even cooler/stranger that it is in plain sight, but the general public would never know. What’s also great is that now that I’m older I’m able to appreciate some of the more adult references, but also the severity of Agent K and J’s mission once the chase for the Galaxy begins, even though this tale feels grounded to New York, there are some huge stakes from space that actually threaten the safety of the world which was awesome.

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Now let’s talk about the cast. Firstly there’s Will Smith as Agent J, originally he’s a police detective, but gets recruited into the M.I.B. by Agent K. Agent J is a little cocky, ambitious and doesn’t listen to authority, however he is strong-willed, quick on his feet, funny and tenacious. Smith just kills it in this role as it allows him to be his regular humourous self, but also shows off his charm, charisma and serious side when it comes to the action. Tommy Lee Jones is no slouch and does a great job as Agent K. This guy is very much in the vain of most of Clint Eastwood’s various roles in cinema, he’s gruff, doesn’t smile much, sticks to the rules and is a mentor to J. Jones’ performance is nothing short of brilliance, he has that great screen presence and dry wit, and together with Smith they both have some of the best on-screen chemistry of any pair I’ve seen in a film ever. They’re just a great pairing.

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Linda Fiorentino as Laurel Weaver is lovely, she’s a smart and confident Medical Examiner who runs into the M.I.B. on a few occasions. Weaver is beautiful lady and has some really great screen time especially with Smith. Oh but the guy that almost steals the show is Vincent D’Onofrio as Edgar the Bug. D’Onofrio has always been known for his memorable cinematic performances and this is definitely one of them, this character is so strange, disturbing and unsettling, and it must have been bloody hard to move around and talk in the manner that he did, but D’Onofrio made this character super funny and creepy at the same time and that’s no easy feat. Also Rip Torn as Agent Zed is pretty good too, he was a lot of good dialogue and his delivery of some his lines is nothing short of awesome.Tony Shalhoub is pretty funny as Jack Jeebs, I also liked Siobhan Fallon Hogan as Beatrice and finally David Cross was jokes as Newton the Morgue Attendant.

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Now let’s talk about the presentation. Visually the film is really great. When it comes to the special effects I loved the use of both practical and digital effects. For the aliens I liked the various designs, colours and character traits and I have to give a big shout out to Rick Baker and Industrial Light & Magic for their great work. Oh and the soundtrack, man, I really love it. Danny Elfman crafts varied score for this film as it is cool and mysterious, then aggressive and sinister or quiet and emotional, Elfman is able to great music that is right for each scene its required for and if you listen to it carefully, the MIB score sounds very similar to the first two Spider-Man films.

And lastly how does it compare to the comics? Well unfortunately I’ve never the comics this film was based on, much like The Mask I never knew this was an adaptation of comic book property until I looked it up online a good few years ago  That being said I’ve always wanted read the comics at some point.

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So to conclude Men In Black is a really entertaining and interesting sci-fi comedy with some brilliant performances from Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith, great special effects and a wonderful soundtrack. If you haven’t seen this film in a while or haven’t seen it ever, I would implore you to do so, it’s a lot of fun and still holds up well.

Rating: 8/10

That’s 5 reviews done, only 25 more to go. So have you seen Men In Black and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 5, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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