The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day (Best Buy Exclusive)
Sean Patrick Flannery
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Years after their vigilante spree, the McManus Brothers, Connor (Sean Patrick Flannery) and Murphy (Norman Reedus) are living in Ireland with their father, Il Duce (Billy Connolly). They return to their old Boston stomping grounds when they're framed for the murder or a priest, and find themselves embroiled in a war with the mob.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
The story behind THE BOONDOCK SAINTS is at least as interesting as the finished film itself. Originally, writer-director Troy Duffy sold his script to Miramax in the late nineties, until the project fell apart through a series of circumstances that should serve as a cautionary showbiz tale for the ages. The resulting documentary OVERNIGHT is not pretty.
Nevertheless, Duffy managed to get THE BOONDOCK SAINTS made, and while it barely got a theatrical release, it became a cult hit on video-DVD, picking up enough of a following throughout the numerous DVD re-releases to get a sequel. I was more-or-less excited to see ALL SAINTS DAY when it came out a few years ago, as I really liked the first one when I first saw it (I was about 18 when it hit video- the perfect age for BOONDOCK SAINTS), although if you re-watch the first film now, it's not as great as a lot of it's fans seem to remember.
ALL SAINTS DAY is more of the same, with Duffy spending a lot of time hitting the same beats the first film did, with Julie Benz- being the new addition to the franchise- more or less a sexy girl version of Willem Dafoe in the first film (who returns for an extended cameo towards the end). I found ALL SAINTS DAY to be too talky, with not enough action, and I especially hate the weird decision to make the final shoot-out happen without SFX, with only generic action music playing over the carnage. I guess that was meant to be "arty" but it's distracting and ruins good action choreography.
This new "Best Buy" exclusive Blu-ray cut runs over 20 minutes longer, but as the movie- which came close to hitting two hours the first time- seemed over-length originally, now it's even more-so. The extra footage is mostly scene-extensions and exposition, but if you're a cultish fan of the series, this may interest you. For me, it was all unnecessary and the film is not only better without the 20 minutes, but it should have been cut more.
This is a two disc set. The first disc is the theatrical cut, and is exactly the same Blu-ray as was previously issued. The new material is all on Disc 2 which houses the director's cut . We get two commentary tracks one with Troy Duffy, Sean Patrick Flannery, Norman Reedus, and Billy Connolly. This is a lively track, although Duffy occasionally comes off as insufferable, ranting about critics, interviewers, etc. The second track is mostly Troy Duffy solo, although he's joined later on by Willem Dafoe, who only has a cameo in the film itself. There's two featurettes one is The Saints off-script which is a fun featurette about life on the set, and the light atmosphere Duffy tried to maintain. The second, Back to Boondock is a more standard making of.
I wasn't very keen on ALL SAINTS DAY when I saw it theatrically, and the new "Director's Cut" hasn't improved the film at all. Fans may love it, but to me it's unnecessary and feels like a cash grab, although the commentary tracks are fun. I'm sure at some point we'll get a BOONDOCKS 3, but if we do, I hope it's a little leaner and meaner.