Men In Black II (2002) – Review

2 1/2 Stars

This blockbuster sized sequel is a slickly designed package lacking the freshness of the first film, but still qualifies as superior entertainment. Will Smith again stars as Agent Jay, the former NYPD cop turned secret alien police enforcer. This time out Jay must enlist the help of Frank the talking pug, a group of French accented worms and his retired partner Agent Kay. Their assignment to stop a renegade alien (posing as a lingerie model) from discovering a hidden life-force on Earth. The plot details aren’t why moviegoers flock to the ‘MIB’ movies, it’s the chemistry between Smith (has there ever been an actor so comfortable in effects sequences?) and Jones. That on-screen pairing is again firing on all cylinders in this follow-up. Jones’s flat, world-weary delivery is the perfect foil to Smith’s hyperactive antics.

The screenplay by Robert Gordon and Barry Fanaro is funny and eccentric, throwing in offbeat characters and races. The mini-species that lives in a train locker is a personal favorite. However the special effects threaten to take over the show on a few occasions. A mid-air chase sequence near the end feels like the filmmakers were spinning their wheels. Thankfully short with an 88 minute running-time (including 8 min of credits), this fun offbeat sci-fi comedy is perfect viewing on a cool summer night.

Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Stars: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Rosario Dawson

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