Boondock bedazzles again
    Boondock Saints II will knock your socks off. Photo courtesy of Sony Productions.

    Grade: A-
    Bottom Line:Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day lives up to its predecessor’s reputation, bringing you more action, more man-candy and more profanity. But it also steps out of Boondock’s shadow, throwing the audience a brand-new curveball plot coupled with more stunning visual effects.

    I’ll admit –- I went into the movie thinking Boon-wha?

    Never having seen The Boondock Saints, the sequel’s audacity in plot, characters and raw action simply caught me off guard. I’d like to describe it as Bourne Ultimatum meets The Departed, but that would be an insult to the originality of writer and director Troy Duffy’s cult classic.

    For those of you like me –- let me catch you up. The Boondock saga chronicles the adventures of the MacManus brothers in their motivation to bring justice to Boston. The two vigilante killers have been living a quiet life in Ireland with their father, but return to Boston to avenge the murder of their beloved priest.

    Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day gave me some motivational sense of purpose. I walked out of the screening room with my head held high, ready to go do…something. So I went home and streamed The Boondock Saints.

    Having caught up on my Boondock knowledge, I can truly say the sequel gives the audience everything they loved about the first one, and more. It is far more than a simple action movie; the combination of action and plot is what makes the film so powerful. Comic relief is wittily interwoven with the movie’s deeper message, and the film was a unique amalgamation of all aspects of entertainment.

    There was something for every audience. For the guys, Julie Benz (Dexter) plays a female FBI Special Agent, with a tongue as sharp as her heels, while Sean Patrick Flanery and Norman Reedus (Boondock Saints) provide girls with plenty of shirtless, tattooed action. For the shallow movie-goer, there’s guns. Which means lots of action. And for the movie critic, there’s a sharply crafted plot, threading both installments together seamlessly.

    And just because I’m a tease, I’ll leave you with the opening line from the movie: “There are two kinds of people. Talkers and doers. Doers change the world, and they change us. Which are you?”

    Go do something about it, and watch Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day.

    North by Northwestern sat and talked with director Troy Duffy and actor Sean Patrick Flanery. Here are a few excerpts from the interview.

    Why do you think there’s such a cultish appeal to this movie?

    Troy: Every Boondock fan I ask has a different set of reasons for why they like it. One of the things that I think helps Boondock get to a slightly deeper level is the fact that I honestly believe anytime anyone sees something truly disgusting on the news, our first gut reaction, whether we’re male, female, liberal or conservative, is “that guy should die for raping a four-year-old girl to death.” They don’t say anything about it, they don’t do anything about it, but they have that gut reaction. I truly believe that. I think that’s one of the factors.

    What was the most challenging aspect of filming the sequel?

    Sean: That would require there to be challenging aspects. For me to fucking want it is the most. Let’s not forget, we’re making a fucking movie. It’s the easiest job there is, it doesn’t feel like work. [Boondock] is not like a typical Hollywood movie. The film was made in a way normal people would, without any Hollywood pretense, without anybody locking themselves in a trailer, saying “I’m not coming out cause my coffee’s cold,” or shit like that.

    In your opinion, how does Boondock II differ from the original?

    Troy: We have a very healthy distrust of sequels in the United States. Because they suck, let’s just be honest. We know the ones that are good, but those are few and far between. My approach was: “Why are those sequels good?” I discovered they give you everything you love about the first movie, plus a brand-new plot that you could’ve never seen coming. I tried to emulate the theory behind good sequels.

    The end of the second movie set the stage for another installment. Do you see anything like along these lines happening in the future?

    Sean: I would make 20 of these films, if they would let us. I would do this shit –- if we could use profanity and do it right -– I would do this as a TV series. Wholeheartedly. If it was all like this. If we could retain this and capture the same dynamic, abso-fucking-lutely I would.

    Troy: For a third movie, there’s definitely a possibility. I’d like to get a few more films off my chest, but we’re set up for it. I’ve got some ideas, but writing that second script was almost like cracking a code. You’re not able to just sit down and put pen to paper. I had to completely respect the story before it, and pretty soon, I’d write myself into a corner. Writing Boondock II was like cracking a code to a bank vault. Boondock III is going to be like cracking the code to the bank of Fort fucking Knox. But I know I’m going to be walking down the street someday and that idea is going to just pop into my head –- the one salient, thorough line that I need to connect everything in three. So it’ll come, I’m just not exactly sure when. No need to force it, let’s ride this one into the shore and see what happens.


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