Red 2: Even Better Than The Real Thing? Well, Not Quite

Posted by Stephanie on August 9, 2013



Last weekend new Kdrama fan Kate came for a visit. We didn’t have time for a full Kdrama marathon, so what did we do? We headed to the big movie theater over in Portland for a viewing of Red 2, with former Khottie Lee Byung Hyun!

Let’s just say this. I loved the original Red movie. It was a fun time and, for an action movie, was surprisingly well written. Great characters, distinct turning points, and lots of humor and action. I was totally hooked. So when I heard they were making a sequel, I figured I’d see it. But then when I heard Lee Byung Hun was in it, I knew it would have to be a must see.

Of course then when it came out, it pretty much tanked in the box office, so I was scared away. Okay, lie. Really, I didn’t have the time or the inclination to see it alone. But in came Kate and there we went.[youtube]
So was Red 2 as good as the first? Unfortunately, no. Are seconds ever really better than the first? Again, no. But was it a bad movie? No. It was still a fun time. There were lots of action sequences, a bunch of humor, and Lee Byung Hun being all bad ass. It just wasn’t as well written as the first movie. The stakes were made up, there were characters there just to be quirky stops along the way, and it was a bit disjointed.

Red 1 had a lot of heart that this move was lacking. In that one we had the building of the relationships between the main couple, and the ex-spy couple, the ‘getting the gang back together’ situations, and the evolution of the agent from straight-laced yes man to an actual person who thought for himself, not afraid to buck the rules. This one was just missing that.

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The one thing Red 2 had that Red didn’t? Well of course that would be Lee Byung Hun! I know I’m a little Kdrama biased, but I thought he did a great job. First off, the action skills he has are just killer (heh heh heh, he plays a hired killer) but secondly, he did a great job with that accent! There are a lot of times I seem my Kdrama biases speaking English and part of me goes, “please don’t do that, you’re dropping hotness points”. But you can tell he worked really hard on this. Which just made his character that much cooler.

Sorry LaurieADGirl, he was not naked as you’d hoped. Close, cut no cigar. But for me he didn’t need to be. I loved the hand to hand combat scenes when he’s in a suit just kicking the crap out of anyone who got in his way.

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I also liked the part of his back story where they made it the reason he was so eager to fill the contract on Frank was that Frank had made it look like Han Cho-bai was a traitor to Korea and could never go back there. Aww….he just wanted to go home. I think I liked this so much because, going into it, I hadn’t expected him to have such a big part. Let along speak so much. I don’t know, maybe I thought he’d just be the silent bad guy? Or worse yet, the henchman to the bad guy? I was pleasantly surprised.

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