Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Jarhead 2: Field Of Fire

Collapse
X
Collapse
  •  
    Travis Sheldon
    Senior Member

  • Jarhead 2: Field of Fire



    Released by:
    Universal Pictures
    Released on: August 19, 2014
    Director: Don Michael Paul
    Cast: Cole Hauser, Josh Kelly, Danielle Savre
    Year: 2014
    Purchase From Amazon

    The Movie:

    Back in the days of home video stores it was not uncommon to find Direct-to-Video (DtV) sequels lining the shelves. Most of the time you could be assured that at least a few of the original crew were a part of the production. Other times you might find the even rarer Sequel-in-Name-Only (SiNO) film. These productions took a valuable, or at least somewhat recognizable, intellectual property and went in a totally different direction from the first film. The film I am about to review is a hybrid of both of these categories, it is a Direct-to-Video Sequel-in-Name-Only, (DtVSiNO). And the most curious thing is that it is actually a decent flick.

    We first see Corporal Chris Merrimette (Josh Kelly), as his squad is trying to unload a truck full of supplies for Patrol Base Cobra. Only problem is they're being attacked by the Taliban, so they get a pass for the hand-held shaky cam. The squad's leader is hit by an RPG and dies. Then we're off to Camp Leatherneck for debriefing, so I guess the Taliban gave up after killing the leader and went home. Major James Gavins (Stephen Lang) informs Cpl. Merrimette that he is the new squad leader. Merrimette is apprehensive because his wife is pregnant and he is considering leaving the Corps once his contract is up. After getting some downtime, Merrimette's team is given orders to deliver two cargo trucks to a base deep in Taliban territory. They're also given a new member in Private Khalid (Rhonny Jhuti), an Afghani soldier. This causes some unease, especially with Cpl. Danny Kettner (Bokeem Woodbine). Kettner was also up for promotion to leader, but Merrimette was chosen and he's a team player. Soon they're off on their mission, but it isn't long before they have to stop due to finding suspicious objects on the side of the road. Not knowing if it's an IED or not, they radio in for help. After waiting many hours in the heat for backup to take care of the possible IED, Pvt Khalid tales it upon himself to investigate the objects. Against the orders of Cpl. Merrimette, Khalid disarms the IED and gets a face full of Cpl. Kettner for good measure. After they get back on track, they come across the remaining survivors of a SEAL Team and a woman dressed in local Afghani fashion. The leader of the SEAL Team is Special Operations Senior Chief Fox (Cole Hauser) and he explains to Merrimette that his team has 24 hours to extract the Afghani woman, Anoosh (Cassie Layton), who is being tracked by the Taliban. They are quickly attacked by the Taliban and the vehicles, including the cargo trucks, are destroyed. Since Fox is senior officer, he takes command of the team and they try to get the Afghani woman to safety. Setting out on foot, Fox wants to get to a local town and find a Police Captain he knows to aid them in their quest. After receiving sniper fire, Fox and Merrimette crawl through a poppy field to attack the snipers at close range. The poppy farmers hear the gunfire and come to check out what is going on. Fox is hit and instructs Merrimette to continue the mission to get Anoosh to the Captain. Merrimette's team finds the Captain, but they are turned in by a local Taliban sympathizer and Anoosh is captured and taken to a nearby stronghold. There she is slated for execution at dawn the next day. Merrimette's team must find her before it's too late.

    Jarhead 2 has plenty of the action genre cliches present, but they are used wisely and effectively by Director Don Michael Paul (Half Past Dead, Who's Your Caddy?). This film is straight ahead action. No fantastic story twists and turns, just soldiers doing their thing on the Taliban. And I'm okay with that. Too often screenwriters play cute and add stuff to a script where it isn't needed. In fact it's refreshing to see a film with no pretension of being something more than what it is.

    There are numerous good performances, but Cole Hauser is great as Fox. He frequently flashes the trademark Hauser grin and gives one of the best performances I've seen from him. Josh Kelly as Merrimette gives the character just enough vulnerability, as the soldier thrust into a situation he may not be ready for, to make him believable. Stephen Lang gives a great performance in a bit part as the Major. He and Esai Morales go back and forth back at Leatherneck Camp. The rest of the cast do a fine job and there's no portrayals here that come off as OTT or half-assed. Just solid.

    Video/Audio/Extras:

    Video is presented AVC encoded with an aspect ratio of 2.35:1. The majority of the running time takes place during the day, so the picture is bright and clean. One of the two nighttime scenes was a bit overly lit for my taste, but I have never been in the moonlight in Afghanistan, so maybe it looks like a spotlight there. The shots from inside buildings have a natural lighting look to them which is nice. They used a mix of practical and CGI here, and most of the time it works just fine.

    Sound is English language DTS 5.1 Master Audio, so the gunfire and explosions come through loud and with great frequency. The music is very loud in the beginning and end. I thought this might be a problem early on, but as the story gets going the music is held back. I never had a problem making out dialog, but if needed subtitles are present.

    Both rated and unrated versions are available on the disc. One odd thing is the rated version runs 6 seconds longer than the unrated. The only difference I could tell in the two versions was a scene of manjunk in the unrated version. My guess is this was cut for the rated version and replaced with a longer party scene at Camp Leatherneck. Not much in the way of extras, but there are two deleted scenes. Neither scene really adds anything of note, as both scenes seem to be just a longer version of scenes still in the film.

    The Final Word:

    Maybe they could have called this film something besides Jarhead 2 and given it a different ad campaign to separate it from the pack. Going into the film I had no idea what to expect. In the end, Jarhead 2: Field of Fire proves to be a worthy warrior in the dump bin of DtV Action films. Give it a chance and you should be pleasantly surprised with how good it is.


    Click on the images below for full sized Blu-ray screen caps!






















    • Mark Tolch
      #1
      Mark Tolch
      Senior Member
      Mark Tolch commented
      Editing a comment
      So....somebody took a largely anti-war film like JARHEAD and made a straight-to-video action movie sequel that's basically a war film? Awesome.
    Posting comments is disabled.

Latest Articles

Collapse

  • Home Grown Horrors Volume Two (Vinegar Syndrome) Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome
    Released on: November 25th, 2022.
    Director: Jimmy Lee, Michael S. O'Rourke, Dennis Devine
    Cast: Barry Wyatt, Jake Henry, Francine Lapensée, Blake Gibbons, Ingrid Vold, John Marzilli, Tom Hamil, Diana Karanikas, Angela Eads, Kay Schaber
    Year: 1989/1989/1990
    Purchase From Amazon

    Home Grown Horrors Volume Two – Movie Review:

    Vinegar Syndrome second Home Grown Horrors collection assembles three films
    ...
    01-27-2023, 06:54 PM
  • Attack Of The Beast Creatures (AGFA) Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: AGFA
    Released on: February 28th, 2023.
    Director: Mike Stanley
    Cast: Robert Nolfi, Julia Rust, Robert Lengyel, Lisa Pak, Frank Murgalo, John Vichiola
    Year: 1985
    Purchase From Amazon

    Attack Of The Beast Creatures – Movie Review:

    In May of 1920, somewhere in the North Atlantic, a ship that is not the Titanic but very much like the Titanic goes down. A few survivors manage to make their way into a life board and a short
    ...
    01-23-2023, 11:52 AM
  • The Invisible Maniac (Vinegar Syndrome) UHD/Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome
    Released on: November 25th, 2022.
    Director: Adam Rifkin as Rif Coogan
    Cast: Noel Peters, Shannon Wilsey, Stephanie Blake, Melissa Moore, Clement von Franckenstein, Rod Sweitzer, Debra Lamb, Marilyn Adams, Savannah
    Year: 1990
    Purchase From Amazon

    The Invisible Maniac – Movie Review:

    Directed by Adam Rifkin, credited as Rif Coogan, 1990’s The Invisible Maniac, opens with a scene where a psychiatrist
    ...
    01-20-2023, 06:53 PM
  • Don’t Deliver Us From Evil (Mondo Macabro) Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: Mondo Macabro
    Released on: February 7th, 2023.
    Director: Joël Séria
    Cast: Jeanne Goupil, Catherine Wagener, Gerard Darrieu, Bernard Dheran, Michel Robin
    Year: 1970
    Purchase From Amazon

    Don’t Deliver Us From Evil – Movie Review:

    Don't Deliver Us From Evil is a very loose adaptation of the notorious story of Pauline Parker and Juliet Hammond, the two murderous maids who also inspired Peter Jackson's Heavenly Creatures
    ...
    01-18-2023, 01:32 PM
  • Freeway (Vinegar Syndrome) UHD/Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: Vinegar Syndrome
    Released on: November 25th, 2022.
    Director: Matthew Bright
    Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Kiefer Sutherland, Brooke Shields, Dan Hedaya, Brittany Murphy, Amanda Plummer
    Year: 1996
    Purchase From Amazon

    Freeway – Movie Review:

    Written and directed by Matthew Bright, 1996’s Freeway tales the story of a high school student named Vanessa Lutz (Reese Witherspoon) who lives with her crack smoking prostitute
    ...
    01-17-2023, 06:31 PM
  • House Of Terrors (Mondo Macabro) Blu-ray Review
    Ian Jane
    Administrator
    by Ian Jane


    Released by: Mondo Macabro
    Released on: January 10th, 2023.
    Director: Hajime Satô
    Cast: Kô Nishimura, Yûko Kusunoki, Shinjirô Ebara, Masumi Harukawa
    Year: 1965
    Purchase From Amazon

    House Of Terrors – Movie Review:

    Director Hajime Satô’s 1965 film, House Of Terrors, introduces us to a woman named Yoshie (Yûko Kusunoki) just as she is saying her final goodbye to her husband, recently locked away in a mental hospital, as his
    ...
    01-15-2023, 06:14 PM
Working...
X