2020’s ‘The 2nd’ is the kind of low budget action movie that, once upon a time, might have been described as ‘straight-to-video’ and is the sort of thing I might have mistakenly picked up at Blockbusters in my early twenties to watch with my flat-mates and some cheap lager when we were unable to sufficiently fund a night in the pub. The lager was an essential component of the viewing experience as it would have inoculated me from the bad acting, incoherent plot and unconvincing special effects.
It has been a long time since I was last in my twenties, my flat-mates have been replaced by a wife and child, and I no longer drink cheap lager. I do still drink, I’m just a little more discerning and frankly I wouldn’t waste one of my overpriced pretentious craft IPAs on a dirge such at ‘The 2nd’. While no longer ‘straight-to-video’ it’s fair to say that this movie would not have enjoyed a cinematic release, even if 2020 hadn’t been the year that it was. This was very much a ‘straight-to-Netflix’ affair and I was duped into watching it because it starred Ryan Phillipe, who I recall having been in some quite good films at one point in his career.
However, while Phillipe is, without doubt, the best thing in this movie by a country mile, he doesn’t have to try very hard to achieve that. ‘The 2nd’ is a bad film, that genuinely should only ever be watched by drunk people in their twenties.
I saw it for what it was from the trailer alone, and only persevered with watching it because it is, for some strange reason, set at Christmas time, and after five years of compiling these pointless advent calendars, I do, quite often, have to visit the lower quality end of the movie world. Watching ‘The 2nd’ was perhaps evidence that I really do need to stop doing this now.
Score for Christmasishness
Credit where credit is due; insofar as the plot makes any sense at all, Christmas does seem to be quite an integral part of it all. It’s really the only credit ‘The 2nd’ deserves but it is is quite Christmas(ish). That will not, alas, mean that I will ever watch it again.