Men in Black II

| July 4, 2002

In Men In Black (1997) we were introduced to a super secret government organization that keeps track of all of the space aliens that seem to think Earth is the best place to vacation. In MIB we saw the intrepid agents J (Will Smith – Ali) and K (Tommy Lee Jones – The Fugitive) fighting the scum of the Universe so that Earth isn’t blown to bits. The men in black have come back in Men In Black 2, fighting new scum so that, once again, the Earth isn’t blown to bits. I think that since they saved the Earth from being blown up in the first installment, we kind of know that it probably isn’t going to happen this time either. That might be why my wife’s total review of this movie is:
“Eh, I liked the first one better.”
Thanks, honey, but I think I need to write a little bit more.
“Well, Lara Flynn Boyle looked tasty. And where did she get that bra?”
Yes, Boyle (from TV’s The Practice and Happiness) did look, uh, tasty as Serleena, the antagonist in Men In Black 2. She is an evil Kylothian monster, disguising herself in sexy lingerie, searching for a weapon with which she can destroy her enemies. She thinks it has been hidden on Earth. But in this matter, we are told at the beginning of the movie, Earth has acted like one big Switzerland, and has stayed neutral and sent The Light of Laranna (not sure of the spelling, but you get my drift) off somewhere else. Or have we?
The only one who knows for sure is Agent K, but he retired 4 years ago and was “neuralized” so he remembers nothing from his decades of service to MIB. Smith must convince K who he is, and also unlock the information stored somewhere deep in his memory before the Earth is destroyed and so that they can continue to be our best, last, and only line of defense against the scum of the Universe in Men In Black 3.
Boyle wasn’t the only cutie to expend some energy on. Rosario Dawson (Valerie from Josie and the Pussycats) is very good as Rita, a witness who J does not neuralize. As it ends up, it’s a good thing he doesn’t. Also back from MIB are Rip Torn (Wonder Boys, The Insider) as MIB Chief Z, the worm guys, Jeebs (Tony Shaloub – 13 Ghosts), and Fred the Pug who has an expanded role inside the organization instead of just an informant.
I think Men In Black 2 is a good continuation of the series. Lots of great jokes. Lots of cool aliens. A bunch of cool toys that the boys get to play with. There are some FUNNY inside jokes made at the expense of the producers and directors – including a cameo by director Barry Sonnenfeld (MIB, Wild Wild West). And, as in the first installment, Will Smith makes the black suit “look good.”
There are also lots of tag lines for this movie:
Same Planet. New Scum.
Coming To Rid Your Earth of the Scum of the Universe… Again!
This Summer, They’re Back in Black.
This Summer, They’re Back in Business. They’re Back in Action. They’re
Back in Black.
Time to put on the last suit you’ll ever wear…again…
Back In Black.
Wow, you’d think that it was important to market a movie.
Unlike my harder to please wife when it comes to cinema entertainment, I think Men In Black 2 is a good continuation of the series begun as a Malibu Comics series. And the former owner of Malibu aside, I think the series has gone forward well. It made for an evening of fun. Go see it and then go rent the DVD!

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