Since I loved the first iteration of the franchise, I did not lose time to jump into the second. How could I miss Rake coming back from the dead to jump into another impossible situation? With more guns? With more fighting? With more knife fights but with guns?
The 21-minute “oner sequence” did not disappoint. I might or might not have held my breath from Rake silently stepping into the Georgian prison to the team’s glorious escape. The sequence has so many good parts: Rake being Hulk-smashed by the Nagazi leader, the prison-yard fighting ending with a hand grenade, and of course, the cherry on top: Rake banging on the big guy’s face with a fist on fire!
Fine, I know I sound like a groupie. I’ll dial it down.
I like the character development of Rake. How he deals with impossible situations, but he can’t deal with his guilt for leaving his son on his deathbed. How he couldn’t handle those feelings, but how he handles the pain and suffering. He literally welcomes that pain, just to evade the guilt. There’s no explanation or an excuse for what he has done, and he knows it. The only thing he could say was, “I couldn’t fix it.”
He may not be able to fix that, but boy, he can kill. And he knows that, too. He knows he’s a killer, and he’s an excellent one. He embraces that, too, and puts everything he has into making the best of it. Again, to evade the guilt.
I thought Hemsworth’s acting was a bit better in the first movie, though. He doesn’t disappoint in this one either, but it’s not as good as the first movie. His endurance and ability to take a punch is about the same, though. I did not buy the miracle 6-week recovery, though.
Lastly, I just freaking love Idris Elba’s acting. The man is the definition of being charismatic. I loved his work in The Wire, which is a masterpiece in every way.
Here's the trailer, if you're curious: