The Irish Rican Takes On BOONDOCK SAINTS 2!!
Ryan 'Irish Rican' McLelland here -
I found BOONDOCK SAINTS a couple years after it had hit on video. When I was serving in the military the pilots who flew at night used to watch it incessantly before going off to fly in the helicopters and for some reason I always would walk in during Willam Dafoe's drag scene. This scene never made me want to actually sit down and watch the film. But something stuck with the pilots and the film, even calling themselves 'The Bastardos' after a throwaway line in the movie. One night they forced me to sit down and watch it and I was instantly hooked. Since then I've watched the movie once a month for the next six years.
There seems to be two very different camps for BOONDOCK SAINTS: the ones who hate the movie with pure disgust vs. the ones who love the movie and scream about it to the heavens. Sure there are some who think the movie to be 'okay' but those are the people who are few and far between.
Then there's director/writer Troy Duffy himself who has had his share of controversy over the years. Duffy landed the infamous movie deal with Harvey Weinstein and Miramax only to see everything he worked for get pissed away. He never got the bar bought for him, he never made the movie with Miramax, even after BOONDOCK got made it never found its way to theaters, and his group The Brood (renamed The Boondock Saints) saw their CD flop - even though it was a damn good debut album.
THE BOONDOCK SAINTS has been dying for a sequel. Any fan of the film, like myself, knows that the end of the film sets up the McManus brothers to become the vengeful eye of Boston. As cult classics go the original film is a monster success - especially when you think in terms of the sequel actually being made AND released in theaters nationwide. Troy will now have his day with Boondock up on the big screen - finally have the time to sink or swim with his creation. Will his sequel hold up ten years after the first film was made?
For those who aren't aware of the plot the Saints (Sean Patrick Flannery, Norman Reedus) are living the quiet life with their father (uber-killer and ultimate kickass artist Billy Connolly) in Ireland. When a copycat killer strikes a priest down in the same manner the Saints had done in their crime spree years earlier, it draws the duo right back into action. The city of Boston is left to wonder whether it is a copycat or the real thing - much to the chagrin of the three police officers who helped the Saints kill a mob boss in a court room.
If you want the full plot go see the fucking movie. If you want to know does the sequel hold up or disappoint - I'm glad to say the sequel does not disappoint. The sequel improves on everything that made the first film great. It's one hell of a non-stop thrill ride that keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very last frame (which is a great last frame at that). You don't even need to see the first film to enjoy this movie which is fantastic. It can make fans of the first film happy while being coherent enough for anyone who has yet to see Boodock 1.
The Good? Clifton Collins Jr. has been in about seventy-six films this year and he's been great in every single one. There's no change here. Playing the new saint, a Mexican named Romeo, Collins brings the needed comic relief but also owns this new role. He fits so perfectly into this world that it kind of pisses me off that he wasn't in the first film. Julie Benz (the hottie from Dexter) plays hottie FBI agent Eunice Bloom - who is delicious eye-candy throughout the film. Benz replaces Willam Dafoe's character and unfortunately she is given a bit less to do in this film. When she is on-screen she surely is fun to watch. Nearly everyone comes back from the first film - even Rocco (David Della Rocco) appears in a flashback.
The Indifferent? Judd Nelson and Peter Fonda. They are in the film but are really just secondary characters. You don't care about them and simply hope the Saints come in to kill them.
The bad? There is A LOT of plot in this film. How can that be 'bad'? While not technically bad, the add-on of stuff that could have been kept until a third movie was added in. Of course there might not be a third movie so Troy Duffy probably felt he needed to pack it all in now. This causes the film to slow down at times but luckily it picks right up soon.
The fact that this film got made is amazing in itself. The fact that this film then looks amazing, sounds even better, with impeccable acting, and a phenomenal story is sort of like bringing a Playboy model as your date to the prom then getting laid afterwards with her and her twin sister. The film just doesn't satisfy fans but will certainly be a welcome start for a whole new film career for Duffy. It certainly is the action movie of the year and I'm hard-pressed to think of anything that comes close to All Saints Day. Fans of the first film will love All Saints Day and the haters may finally like the franchise for the first time. Now all we can hope for is a trilogy.