Richard Donner directs Mel Gibson, Donald Glover and Joe Pesci in this buddy cop action comedy sequel where Riggs & Murtagh take on some vile, racist, drug dealing South African diplomats.
“The Magic Is Back!” So heralded the poster and it didn’t lie. Gibson and Glover’s unmatchable onscreen chemistry mixed with Donner’s impeccable blockbuster instinct. Forget the shoestring plot, this is a pearl necklace of stand-out bits strung together on the goodwill of the excellent first film. The toilet bomb set piece was so perfect that they just used it as a trailer. The appetite to revisit these loveable characters so overpowering, that the film just starts mid action sequence (a bantering car chase where the family station wagon becomes a slapstick fall guy) and then doesn’t ever stop to establish a clear plot. Apartheid = bad = boo hiss racists we want to see get their just desserts. It doesn’t have to be more complicated than that. We want to see the daughter’s big debut condom advert, “But…but you’re blick?!”, Leo Getz’s rant at getting the wrong sandwich at the drive-thru and Mad Mel sex scene the Oasis out of Patsy Kensit. You came for comedy… well the wisecracking repartee has matured with age, you came for bloody destructive vengeance… well… Riggs learns this time it is personal and becomes a rage monster for the final reel. To wit “I’m not a cop tonight, Rog. This is personal.” Donner literally plunges the sunny film into murky shadow to match his deranged hero’s moral state. The only area where this pure entertainment falters ever so slightly is that the action isn’t quite as intense as your standard Joel Silver production. Busy but not quite as high octane or necessary. All in all though this is about as pleasurable a Friday night video as you can rent, so generous and giving that you’ll want to rewatch it again the next morning before returning it!
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