Men in Black II
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      If you liked the first Men in Black movie, chances are that you will like Men in Black II .  It is almost a carbon copy of the first movie.  Since it doesn’t break any new ground, Men in Black II while enjoyable doesn’t have the impact that seeing the first film did.   Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones return as agents J and K.   Rip Torn is back as Z (pronounced properly as zed).    This time the world is being threatened by some bad aliens represented by Serleena who is actually a bunch of snakes but assumes the appearance of Lara Flynn Boyle decked out in Victoria’s Secret .  Serleena wants to find something and is willing to destroy the planet if she can’t get it. Unfortunately, the only person who knows where the thing is, had his memory erased at the end of the first movie.  So J (Smith) has to go and find K (Jones) and put him back into the last suit he’ll ever wear.   

     Men in Black II is pretty funny even though like Austin Powers , they run the same gags over and over again.   Once again, the setting is New York city, the only place in the world that aliens can live without being considered out of the ordinary.    As they tell one alien, “Don’t go outside in the daytime unless you are in the East Village.” Smith and Jones do a great job reprising their roles.  Will Smith is manic as always and Tommy Lee Jones takes deadpan acting to a new level.   Unfortunately, Linda Fiorentino is not back as the medical examiner. She is missed.  Instead, we have Rosario Dawson who witnesses Serleena killing another alien and becomes a love interest for Will Smith.  OK, she looks good. Many aliens return for the sequel including Tony Shaloub as Jack Jeebs.  Frank the dog is back and he out acts most of the humans in the movie.   I heard that the director demanded that the original Frank come back for the new movie even though he had to have his grey whiskers dyed with Grecian Formula.   Lara Flynn Boyle looks good although not as good as when she doesn’t have large tentacles extruding from her extremities.    And Patrick Warburton, most famous as Puddy on Seinfeld, does a small but good bit as agent J’s new partner.  

     What can I say. this movie isn’t rocket science. The first Men in Black grossed about $250 million and the director, Barry Sonnenfeld didn’t monkey with success.  It isn’t the fun surprise that the first movie was, but seeing Men in Black II is like seeing an old friend.