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|The Stars are for the
Effects, Not the Stars
Men in Black 2
Tommy Lee Jones, Will Smith
|Actually, that's not
quite fair -- Tommy Lee Jones rises above the material he's been handed
(mostly, anyway -- the "I do the driving" sequence isn't very funny and
doesn't redound to his credit) and actually manages to make some of the
shtick he has to do more than merely competently funny.
Will Smith, unfortunately, doesn't. In fact, he fully lives down to the
In fact, films with Smith seem to play to the easy side of his
characterisation -- the strutting blowhard who isn't nearly as
competent -- or as funny -- as he likes to believe.
Add to that that this film is pretty much a rehash of the first, and
that the basic McGuffin is instantly obvious to fans of either the Tom
Baker-era "Doctor Who" or the fifth season of "Buffy", and you have a
recipe for a film that is fun to watch for the special effects, not
particularly offensive, and i'm really glad i didn't pay for a ticket
to see it.
On teevee, as is often the case, some of the special effects that
probably looked Really Kewl up on the big screen come across as not
particularly impressive, particularly some of the opening subway
The best thing on the DVD is a short feature entitled "The Chubb
Chubbs" -- a shaggy dog story akin to the old joke about "Big John's
a-comin'!", in which a crummy bar on some cheesy planet is populated by
characters like ET, Darth Vader, Robbie the Robot, the Robot from "Lost
in Space" and so on. ((Given the comic book origins of "Men in Black",
i found myself irresistibly reminded of a series entitled "Tales from
Munden's Bar" that ran in the back of "Grimjack" years ago...))
If you haven't seen this film and you were thinking of doing so, my
advice is to watch the first film again, instead.