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Darkman II: The Return of Durant
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Darkman II: The Return of Durant (V) More at IMDbPro »

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13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Surprisingly watchable sequel

5/10
Author: Bogey Man from Finland
12 June 2002

This first sequel to Sam Raimi's Darkman is directed by Bradford May, who worked also as a cinematographer in this film. The story begins where the first film left and there are the same characters again, but Liam Neeson is replaced by Arnold Vosloo as the Darkman/Dr. Westlake. The story is okay and not too stupid considered this is a fantasy film. The actors do fine job and no one acts stupidly. The main point in this film is to deliver action and thrills, and that it does with talent, and especially the cinematography, by the director, is very great and looks almost as fantastic as Raimi's use of camera. The scenes are often exciting, stylish and interesting, and there are only couple of usual cliches and faults which make this film pretty mediocre and worth watching for real fanatics only.

But after all, this could've been MUCH worse and so I am very pleasantly surprised that May could make the film this effective and watchable. Just remember those horrible sequels like Species 2! Darkman 2 is definitely not a masterpiece or important piece of sci-fi cinema, but it works fine as a sequel and as a proof that talented directors appear also from these direct-to-video films. Hopefully May has a fine future as a film maker.

5/10 but don't watch if you prefer mainstream movies or movies that have nothing fantastic or unreal in them. This is science fiction and people who don't understand it, only waste their time by trying to watch these.

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10 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

a decent sequel

Author: MichaelM24 from California
30 April 2002

DARKMAN II isn't as good as the first (obviously), but it's a decent sequel despite the obvious: there's no way Durant should be able to return. He was most-assuredly fried, roasted, toasted and burned all to hell at the end of the previous film, and his return is rather laughable. The story only briefly mentions that he was in a coma since that incident, and doesn't bother trying to come up with anymore more believable. They at least could have had him horribly scared or something, giving him a taste of what he did to Westlake.

But still, it's fun to have him back only so we the audience that take delight in patiently waiting to see him get his at the end. He's just as vial as he was the first time around. Arnold Vosloo takes over for Liam Neeson, and it was nice watching play the hero for a change. He did a good job. Kim Delaney is rather wasted in a part that could have been much more vital to the story than it was.

The film did a good job keeping up the feel of the original, despite lacking Sam Raimi's added punch. It still maintains that comic book feel, with a hidden underground lair and a hero struggling with his own inner rage while trying to stop a madman. Also nice to see the film keep the original movie's musical themes, something sequels don't often do. There's not as much action as the first one, and it's not as good as the second sequel, but as a sequel itself, it's not bad. If only a more believable explanation for Durant's return had been given.

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8 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

The Battle of the Well-Spoken

Author: pantagruella (susanbalaka@googlemail.com) from London, UK
4 January 2004

I disagree with those films fan who feel this is a poor film. I don't feel it's over-shadowed by the original film at all.

Arnold Vosloo is great. This is the man who said, "You wouldn't want to hurt my feelings, would you, Randall?" To justify his greatness in this film, he asks, "Is there a problem?" I enjoy his clear-cut voice-over. He handles the changes from toughness to concern to mad-scientist hilarity very well.

I thought it was a sad move to bring back, Larry Drake, as Robert G. Durant. After all he's hardly super-powered. But still he does well as the villain. He's clever enough to counter the Dark Man a few times. His diction and delivery is very precise. He also knows how to lose his calm when losing the battle of the wits.

The script is good. It's very funny. The actors work well in playing so seriously. Durant has a good gang, with most members getting some time in the spotlight. Two of the crew have the job of playing themselves and Dark Man imitating them.

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

A great sequel.

10/10
Author: StormSworder from United Kingdom
22 March 2005

Darkman, formerly scientists Peyton Westlake, still lives in isolation in the big city. His world, however, is turned upside down when he discovers the gangland boss who blew up his lab and destroyed his life is still alive. Before long, said villain has employed the help of a half-crazed scientist to help him build powerful weapons to control the city. Darkman's only hope is in the use of his synthetic skin creating machinery, sets out to stop the maniacs.

Though never equalling Liam Neeson, Arnold Vosloo is great as Darkman. There are plenty of other good performances as well. The almost-as-monstrous-as-Darkman villain Durant is still an imposing presence, the crazy old genius scientist is good and the film succeeds in re-capturing the spirit of the original very well.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Mediocre low-budget straight-to-video sequel

4/10
Author: Quebec_Dragon from Canada
23 May 2009

Straight to video sequel that lost most of the charm and quirks of the original. The new actor playing Darkman had a beautiful voice but was painfully corny at times. The standout was definitely the journalist (Kim Delaney) and she's in the best moment of the film (you'll know when you see it). The action scenes were far from the quality of the first film but then again, this sequel obviously had a much lower budget. It's a mediocre flick as in very average TV pilot quality, and not painfully bad as the turd, pardon third movie. It's something to see as a curiosity if you liked the first Darkman.

Rating: 4 out of 10

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

sequel

6/10
Author: kai ringler from United States
13 September 2012

not bad at all for a sequel,, personally i thought that it would ab solutely suck without liam neeson, well i was wrong arnold vosloo does a very credible job in this one. the storyline is very good also,, i was wondering how was darkman gonna get durant this time, in the day and age of cgi and today's movie superheroes , it's very nice to know we have darkman from the 1990's to fall back on,, it's seem like for this storyline anyway that less is more,, meaning less or no cgi is better than all of that stuff that you see today. larry drake returns as durant and is as evil as ever,, he is just such a great bad guy,, maybe not as bad as his role as the evil dentist,, but still he's a villain you sure don't wanna mess, with ,, vosloo is very credible as darkman,, so all in all a very decent sequel to watch for all.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Not Bad For A Direct-To-Video Sequel

8/10
Author: breakdownthatfilm-blogspot-com from United States
17 December 2011

It's very unfortunate that a box office success like Darkman did not have any sequels released in theatres. Heck, even RoboCop had two sequels that were theatrically released. Darkman II: The Return of Durant is quite obvious in its title about what the plot will involve. Never the less this film is not all that bad as others claim it to be. I do feel it does not match the same greatness as the first by Sam Raimi but I feel it is still a strong sequel for multiple reasons. New or old actors, all them do a good job with their characters. The story is good even though it is a little bit of retread. And it even contains some interesting dialog that was not included in the original.

Playing as Darkman in this film is Arnold Vosloo, who probably at the time was not a well-known actor for anything. I will give him credit though, I think he fills Liam Neeson's shoes quite nicely. Once you get past his accent, which can take a couple minutes to get used to, the rest of the film is fine. I'll say it anyway although we know he comes back; yes, Larry Drake returns as Robert G. Durant to get his revenge on Peyton Westlake. The same goes for Darkman, who also wants to get his revenge for the final time. One thing I'm kind of upset about is that in the first film we saw Durant die. So he comes back in this film, but with all of his body intact?! And how?! None of this is ever explained. I was expecting at least a missing arm or something. Any of the other main characters from the first film are replaced with new ones. The characters of Darkman and Durant are the only two to return. Even though there are new characters in this film, all the actors do their job well so I was pleased with it.

For the story of Darkman II it's a little bit of a step backward because it looks like Darkman has to kill Durant and his goons AGAIN. But to me, there was nothing truly wrong with that. This film has Westlake do some other things that are neat to watch. Of course Darkman steals their faces, its what he has going for him. Director Bradford May who is not well known for directing any other film franchise I think did a good job. He at least tries to keep much of what was left of the first movie and added into this one.

Even in the screenplay there are some scenes that are different from the first film. Durant and several other characters use dialog that is funny to listen to. It's not gut busting funny but it will develop some chuckles here and there. Darkman even has some funny moments that I would not have expected to see him do because of his portrayal in the first film. Altogether this is a satisfying sequel.

Darkman II: The Return of Durant is no prize package but it keeps the story of Darkman alive and moving. With good performances from the actors, this Direct-To-Video sequel is probably one of the few that actually works and sticks close to its predecessor.

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Darkman returns... with the face of Arnold Vosloo

6/10
Author: (Vomitron_G) from the Doomed Megalopolis of Blasphemous Technoids
4 February 2008

I remember back in 1996, when I saw this one, being pretty disappointed. Because this movie lacks the grandeur of the original. It felt like a lesser movie, and in a way it is of course. But re-watching it, learned me to re-appreciate it, and I now even like it more than back then. It is a darn decent sequel, if you ask me. What it lacks are some heavy-weight emotional aspects of the Darkman (provided in the first one because of his love-interest), therefor the revenge-theme is bit thinner here. It also, clearly lacks a budget of the same size as the first one, making it look a little less impressive. Other than that, the movie delivers as far as most of its predecessor's characteristics go. I must add, however, if you were to take the Darkman himself out of this movie, you'd just end up with a pretty mediocre, run-of-the-mill action movie, truly worthy of the direct-to-video status. But, fortunately, he's still in it, and Darkman only still is the sole reason we watch these movies, now don't we?

This time (and this might be a disappointment to many), Dr. Peyton Westlake is played by Arnold Vosloo. At the time of my first time viewing, I didn't like this very much. Now, I can only conclude Vosloo does a more than decent job stepping in Neeson's footsteps. A nice touch in the script, was having Peyton set up his laboratory on a new location, underground this time. The writers did a very good thing by bringing back Larry Drake as Durant (he's just so mean! :) and having him team up with a mad scientist/weapons inventor. Good thing too, in the plot, was having Darkman, at one point team up with a fellow scientist (Dr. Brinkman) to try and perfect his liquid skin techniques. When, later in the movie, he finds Dr. Brinkman murdered and his dreams smashed to pieces, all the agony of similar things happening to him once come back... and it's Darkman's Revenge Time again! Sadly, this movie is lacking an enjoyable climax in the end. The ending itself doesn't necessarily hint at a sequel, but it leaves the door open saying: this might turn into an on-going series.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

A Good Follow Up

6/10
Author: Scars_Remain from United States
30 January 2008

I really like the original Darkman so I was skeptical as to whether this would be a good sequel or not, but I was impressed. Like the first one, it's in no way a groundbreaking film but it is a good slice of entertainment. I think anyone who liked the first film will like this movie as well.

Arnold Vosloo does an exceptional job taking over Liam Neeson's character and I'd go as far as to say that he is just as good. The story is alright but it kind of seems like a repeat of the original, I guess there's only so much you can do with these movies. I really like the effects as well. This one was fun.

Give Darkman II a viewing if you enjoyed the first one and like some cheesy action. As long as you don't expect a sweeping epic, I think you'll have some fun.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

An OK sequel...could have been better.

6/10
Author: LebowskiT1000 from Escondido, California, USA
16 August 2002

I haven't seen the original "Darkman" in some time, but I remember liking the film quite a bit. "Darkman II: Return of Durant" was an OK film, and had some good stuff in it, but I had a lot of problems with it.

The story isn't too terribly cheesy, but certainly not great either. The acting in this film was OK, but could have been better. Larry Drake did a good job as Robert Durant. Kim Delany and Renee O'Connor both did fine jobs with their respective roles. Arnold Vosloo was sometimes really good and other times just terrible. The rest of the cast was OK, but nothing spectacular.

There were a lot of things that I didn't like about the film. One of these things is near the end when Darkman/Dr. Westlake keeps changing masks every five minutes. Where is he carrying all these masks?

All in all, if you liked the first "Darkman" film, then you may want to see this just in case you do like it. If you haven't seen the first "Darkman", DO NOT watch this film until you have seen it. Thanks for reading,

-Chris

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