Director: Robert Schwentke
Writers: Phil Hay (screenplay), Matt Manfredi (screenplay)
Stars: Jeff Bridges, Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon
After he dies in the line of duty, Ryan Reynolds comes back as a member of the Rest In Peace Department. He’s partnered with a Wild West lawman (Jeff Bridges) and they set about killing bizarro creatures who haunt the earth. Think of a mashup between “Ghostbusters” and “Men in Black” without any of the inventiveness, comedy or coolness. There’s a frantic pace, but nothing entertaining to fill it. Reynolds plays it serious, while Bridges chews the scenery (and some chaw that often makes his mush mouth indiscernible). The efx aren’t bad, but the whole thing is simply DOA.
GAY ANGLE: If Reynolds had taken off his shirt I might not have hated this movie so much.
Director: Dean Parisot
Writers: Jon Hoeber, Erich Hoeber
Stars: Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren
If you didn’t see the first one (or don’t remember), RED stands for “retired, extremely dangerous.” That applies to Bruce Willis and John Malkovich, who set out (with charming Mary-Louise Parker) to save the world from a special bomb. Along the way, they encounter Helen Mirren, Catherine Zeta-Jones & Anthony Hopkins. Watching this A-list cast fight and kill with efficient aplomb is the biggest draw. The action sequences are plentiful and entertaining, while the humor comes more from attitude than lines (and Malkovich’s funny faces). This is an old-fashioned spy flick. It’s not as good as the original or ground-breaking, but it’s still plenty of fun.
GAY ANGLE: Korean villain Lee Byung-hun gets strip searched just so we can see his ripped body.
Jerry Williams reviewed movies for WTVR-TV for 14 years and for Style Weekly for 10 years. When he launched his own website in 1998 at TVJerry.com, he took his reviews to the Internet. Through those hundreds of reviews, Jerry kept his sexual orientation muted. So, he's excited to be adding "gay angles" to his postings for GayRVA.com.