Watching Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, and Helen Mirren team up to blow enemies away with machine guns and explosives has an undeniable charm and it goes to show.RED opened in October of 2010 to the tune $21.8 million and then went on to stay in theaters for four full months and accumulate nearly $200 million worldwide. These Retired and Extremely Dangerous agents certainly earned their sequel.
In RED 2, opening July 19, we find former CIA black ops agent Frank Moses (Willis), again, happily retired, but this time he’s living the Costco shopper life with Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) by his side, much to her chagrin. But soon enough, she gets her wish and gets to add a little danger to their romance again when Frank and Marvin (Malkovich) are tasked with finding and destroying a missing Cold War weapon that returned to pose a serious threat. As if tracking down a super weapon isn’t tough enough, Frank, Marvin and Sarah have to do so with two assassins on their tail – the US hire, Han (Byung Hun Lee), a contract killer with a vendetta against Frank, and someone dispatched by MI6, none other than their old pal, Victoria (Helen Mirren).
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Lorenzo di Bonaventura knows how to make a summer blockbuster.Transformers scored $70.5 million opening weekend in 2007, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen topped that with nearly $109 million in 2009, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra posted a $54.7 million start just after that, and thenTransformers: Dark of the Moon pulled in $97.9 million its first weekend out in the summer of 2011. Now the question is, can he take a long-range success and turn it into one of those summer tentpoles?
RED opened in October of 2010 with a moderate $21.8 million. Considering the film had a $58 million production tab, $21.8 million is sufficient, but also doesn’t necessarily scream franchise-worthy. However, then RED went on to spend a whopping four months in theaters, never losing more than 50.1% of its profits in a single weekend, which let it end its theatrical run with a domestic grand total of $90.4 million and a worldwide total of $199 million. Now a number like that deserves a sequel – which is why summer 2013 brings us RED 2.
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Is it possible for a film starring Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich and Helen Mirren to be bad? Maybe, but if you put handguns, machine guns and grenade launchers in theirs hands and give them some snappy dialogue to work with, you’re basically home free.
What happens when a highly skilled CIA agent retires? He’s labeled RED, short for Retired and Extremely Dangerous and there’s really no better way to describe retiree Frank Moses (Willis). He’s doing okay in a cozy suburban town, decorating his house for the holiday like he’s supposed to, but the highlight of his day is calling a particular federal pension employee, Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker). He calls on a regular basis to report missing checks, but the two simply enjoy talking to each other. Unfortunately for Sarah, Frank’s house is bugged and after narrowly escaping an ambush, he knows the bad guys will head straight to her place.
Having no choice, Sarah reluctantly tags along with Frank as he visits all of his old CIA pals. First stop? Joe (Freeman) who now calls an old aged facility home. Next up is Marvin (Malkovich), a wacky, but skilled ex-agent who’s convinced the government is out to get him. Then there’s Ivan (Brian Cox), a former Russian spy who has a history with the team’s last member, Victoria (Mirren), an elegant ex-MI6 agent. Now that the gang’s all back together, it’s time to take out the bad guys; some nasty folks who don’t want them to spread a little secret.
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