Crimson Rivers 2: Angels of the Apocalypse (2004) Poster

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Suspense and action movie with a supernatural killer
ma-cortes23 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
The movie centers on Niemans (Jean Reno) the police of the first part who has to investigate weird murder series in isolated monasteries of Lorena (north of France) . He's helped by a tough inspector (Benoit Maginel) and join forces with a mystic theme expert (Camille Natta) , all of them investigating a series of ritual murders . They will take on Apocalypse angels , some monks with supernatural power and a villain (Christopher Lee) and his evil henchmen.

In the picture there is frenetic action , emotion , mystery , spooky sets and a little bit of gore . The movie is a crossover between the intrigue of ¨Da Vinci Code¨ , investigation means from ¨CSI¨, and ¨Seven¨ thriller . From the beginning of the film until the end , action-packed is nonstop , it is fast moving and that's why the picture results to be quite entertaining .

The final confrontation between the starring and the contenders in the ¨Maginot line¨ tunnels is spellbinding . The movie obtained a lot of success , as the previous part , featured by Jean Reno and Vincent Cassel . The motion picture will appeal to religious thriller buffs and dark atmosphere enthusiasts . Rating : 6/10 , well worth watching .
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What the ....
editor-9212 April 2005
I loved Les Rivieres Pourpres. I thought it was atmospheric, dark and a bit sinister. But then how can you go wrong with Kassovitz as the director? Well, this sequel is just as atmospheric, but the story is complete crap. It has to do with an ancient order of monks, a member of the German ministry (Christopher Lee speaking flawless French), and a lot of running around. Benoit Magimel is great to watch. He has a lot of pent up hunky angst, which makes for great cinema, and man can he run! Jean Reno is fabulous - as always. The problem with this film is it is so obtuse. It's as if the writer - Luc Besson, need I say more - thought "hmmm I'll add in some ritual killings, some religious references, some fight sequences but leave out logic and any semblance of meaning." I finished watching the film and just scratched my head. WHAT THE F***? The first film makes you scratch your head in a GOOD way. This one just defies purpose. It's as if a chunk of the script was left out. Watch it if you like pseudo-religious thrillers - there's a lot to choose from these days - but if you really need something deeper; something Oh I don't know sensible, forget this stinker. It looks good. It just doesn't make a lot of sense.
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Gothic visuals, intense set-pieces, but the film lacks heart and soul
Libretio14 April 2005
CRIMSON RIVERS II: ANGELS OF THE APOCALYPSE (Les Rivières Pourpres II: Les Anges de l'Apocalypse)

Aspect ratio: 2.39:1

Sound formats: Dolby Digital / DTS

Whilst investigating a bizarre murder inside an ancient monastery, two detectives (Jean Reno and Benoît Magimel) stumble on a series of killings related to a mysterious cult and its charismatic leader (Christopher Lee).

Olivier Dahan's stylish sequel sacrifices the original film's emotional content for a series of intense set-pieces, which mutes the intended effect. The visceral impact is formidable, and the Gothic visuals are a treat, but it fails to work on anything but the most superficial level, and Reno seems to be coasting on auto-pilot. Magimot is one of France's sexiest and most talented young actors, and he steals the film from his high-profile co-stars, though Lee is given little to do, and his presence fails to ignite the expected sparks. Excellent makeup and visual effects.

(French dialogue)
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fast pace but lacking coherence and appeal
dromasca21 February 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Olivier Dahan tries to build on the success of the first 'Rivieres pourpres' and brings back Jean Reno in a second series which has little in common with the first film, unfortunately.

The story is one of a series of murders on persons that emulate the disciples of Christ. What could have been the promising premises of a religious mystery story is combined with a quick pace filming and fights inspired from the Far East Ninja movies. All these are mixed with a post World War II story, and the result looks like a strange pot with differently colored and flavored potions that do not really mix or combine well together.

Jean Reno is a wonderful actor, but he cannot save the film alone. It's a quite a weak film by all scales, like the director did not decide what genre it would belong and took a little but of everything. Disappointeing.
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Desperately Seeking a Longer Running Time
dbborroughs8 April 2005
Jean Reno's detective Niemans is back hunting the mind behind a bizarre series of murders and disappearances, all with a religious overtone. It all begins with a bleeding wall in a monastery and goes from there as twists seem to be leading us toward the end of the world.

I would like to report that this is at least the equal of the earlier film (One of the best thrillers of the past five or six years), but I can't. This is a film that has too many characters and too much plot with the result that you're hard pressed to work out whats happening. Characters such as Mary, a religious expert, or Christopher Lee's ominous business man are never more than cyphers. We get to know nothing about them. There are plot twists or points that are never fully explained. Watching this I had the sense that this was suppose to be about an hour longer but that it had been chopped up to its shortest possible running time. I'm led to believe this by the fact that whats on screen alludes to more than we're seeing, this is a film thats alive off the screen. I wish that they had taken the time to explain more.

None of it is really bad, although the acrobatics of the killer(s) in monks robes are much too far over the top for the films own good.

In the end as a rental or on cable this is okay, but but given a choice I'd watch the first one again over this.

Should Luc Besson read this: Please do another-and better- film with Reno's character. He's too good a creation to die after only two outings.
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Very poor script (ALERT SPOILERS!)
marakid21 April 2004
Warning: Spoilers
A movie very disappointing in many points of his plots... why should Germany and France sign an agreement for enlarging the 60-years old Maginot line? How is it possible that only Jean Reno and his friend can survive the flooding of their room, when they are bonded and all the other people present have their arms free? How can a people dressed like a 10-centuries ago monk walk freely into the restricted area of an airport with a nail-firing gun under his dresses?

These are only some examples of the many questions taht does not have answer in this movie, or admit a very confused one. I don't pretend perfection but at least a decent story.
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Messy Story – A Waste of Budget and Cast
claudio_carvalho28 August 2005
In Lorraine, close to the border of Germany, the Chief Inspector Pierre Niemans (Jean Reno) is investigating the death of a man behind of a wall of an isolated abbey. Meanwhile, the efficient detective Reda (Benoît Magimel) is investigating the attempt of murder of a man called Jesus. They come to the same point along their investigations, join forces with the detective Marie (Camille Natta), a specialist in religious matter, and fight against Heinrich von Garten (Chritopher Lee), a German Minister of Culture and Religion, and a group of powerful monks.

What a mess is this "Les Rivières Pourpres II - Les Anges de l'Apocalypse"! Using the same character of Niemans from the good "Rivières Pourpres", this movie has some good moments, such as the dark atmosphere and Reda pursuing a monk through roofs, houses, sheds and streets. But the plot is totally confused and quite silly, wasting what could be a good movie. I expected much more, and in the end I was completely disappointed with this movie. My vote is six.

Title (Brazil): "Rio Vermelhos 2 – Anjos do Apocalipse" ("Red Rivers 2 – Apocalypse Angels")
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Raiders of the Lost Sense
Vogler7 January 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This sequel is just disappointing. It starts with the great Vincent "Dobermann" Cassel not being in the second part anymore, but he wouldn't save that stupid story anyway. There are many interesting ideas, but when it comes to tie them all together, the end is mostly stolen from "Raiders of the Lost Arch". But there's even more fun in that flick: Nazi monks on 60 year old steroids, which make them invulnerable to bullets... Gimme a break! I wonder if Besson will ever learn that world war 2 is over (remember those evil German villains in "Taxi"?). Part 1 was far better, the story, and especially the appearance of Vincent Cassel. I really wonder how Besson/Reno can make masterpieces like "Leon" on the one hand, and junk like that movie on the other hand.
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Book of Revelation Illustrated for the Movie Audience
gradyharp22 May 2005
While many new writers search for bizarre story material as subject for action thrillers, few have looked to the scariest source of all - St John's Book of Revelation from the Bible. So it is from the pen of Luc Besson ('The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc', 'The Transporter', 'La Femme Nikita') adapting a screenplay from the novel 'Les Rivières pourpres' by Jean-Christophe Grangé that we gain some visualization of the predictions of the Apocalyptic end of the world. And it is as scary as you remember from reading the Bible as a child! Commissioner Niemans (Jean Reno) partners with Reda (Benoît Magimel - the hunky fine actor from 'The Piano Teacher' and 'The Flower of Evil') to investigate a series of crucifixions linked to a near secret abbey. Because of the ecclesiastic nature of the murders a church scholar Marie (Camille Natta) is called in to advise and it is with her skills as an expert on Revelation that she teaches Niemans and Reda the meanings of the breaking of the various Seals, the four horsemen, the events leading up to the prophesied end of the world, and provides the intellectual backup to the thriller chase sequences attempting to apprehend the monks posing as Angels of the Apocalypse provided by Niemans and Reda. Add to this mix the fact that the Abbey is connected to the Maginot Line from WW II and that a German entrepreneur Heinrich von Garten (Christopher Lee) has for some odd reason purchased the Abbey for this own secret agenda and all of the ingredients for a edge of the seat suspense movie are in place.

Reno and Magimel make a terrific screen team with just the right amount of humanism and humor to allow some tension relief for he story. The special effects are excellent as is the cinematography and musical score. Yes, there is considerable blood and guts as each of the 'surrogate apostles' is murdered, but the camera doesn't linger longer than necessary to make the point.

The problem with the film is that it runs out of steam in the end and gives the feeling that someone called "Cut" making story end far too abruptly. But other than that this is a fairly interesting enactment of the Biblical prophecy of the Apocalypse, updated (?) for the audiences of today! Grady Harp, May 05
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Hopelessly muddled
gridoon14 July 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Looking back at my one-line summary for the first "Crimson Rivers", I wrote "stunningly well-directed film...if only it made sense!". For "Crimson Rivers 2", the same description can be used...except for the "stunningly well-directed" part. The script of this movie is hopelessly muddled and hole-filled (as others have mentioned, since when does taking amphetamines make you immortal?), and the direction relies on clichéd, tired imagery to build atmosphere (crucifixes, blood, heavy rain, underlit rooms, religious symbols, etc.). Occasional use of MTV-style over-editing does not help, either. Apparently not learning anything from the mistakes of the original, the filmmakers also included yet another totally gratuitous martial-arts fight. Are there any good points to this film? Well, there is an entertaining gravity-defying foot chase, Reno is always a dependable lead, Magimel has a physical enough presence, Natta is pretty...and you get the rare opportunity to hear Christopher Lee speak only in French! (**)
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What are the heroes doing in this movie ?
Nicolas Chazottes20 February 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Just saw this movie last night and i have just one comment... What have the heroes (Nemans and Reda) done in the movie ? They try for most of the time to save people from being killed by a sect of super monks and fail all the time (apart from Jesus that they save... but he should be dead if the monks had really tried to kill him as much as they succesfully eliminated all the others apostles). The movie ends with the bad guy (Lee) killing himself and his henchmen while Nemans and Reda are his prisonners and doing nothing but saving their life...

At the end... Nemans and Reda are pleased but why ?? they have done nothing... resolved nothing and saved nobody... if they had not been there the story would have been exactly the same.... If i was their superior i would fire them...

One last thing, it seems Lee is the big boss of a pan european organisation of Nazi lovers but it's nearly not used in the movie...
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The first was better
Luigi Di Pilla31 October 2004
Rivières Pourpres 1 was better than 2 because in the first there were much more suspense elements. Here we come quick to the action and so surprises were limited in this average story. It's no doubt a fast paced mystery thriller with lots of special and sound effects. There is a scene that is better than Spiderman. The soundtrack is very strong. The setting places of the monastery or the Ligne Maginot were nice shot. Jean Reno made a solid job in his part as the cop Niemans and cool role of the horror legend Christopher Lee. Don't expect a top thriller but if you want to spend an entertaining evening this one works. Fortunately it's not too long. Will they decide to make part 3? I have some doubts. For these reasons our vote is 6/10.
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Raiders of the Lost Duhhh Vinci Code
LCShackley26 February 2008
It seems that contemporary filmmakers find it difficult to deal seriously with religion. It's much easier to latch on to something in the Bible that they don't quite understand (the Ark, Mary Magdalene, the book of Revelation) and try to create supernatural thrillers under a cloak (in this film's case, a LITERAL cloak) of religiosity.

This film is never quite sure what genre it wants to belong to. Is it just a bloody horror show, or an apocalyptic thriller, or perhaps even a post-WWII neo-Nazi conspiracy film? You might think any of the above, depending on when you started watching. There is some wonderful scenery from the French/German border area, along with astounding stunt work and adrenaline-rush chase scenes. But the plot never clicks, and the ending, although full of excitement, is empty of meaning and resolution. The underground scenes, drenched in water, almost made me wonder if Jeunet took over the direction at that point.

Jean Reno and Christopher Lee are both thrown away in their generic roles as tough cop and dastardly villain. Lee's final scene is such a blatant ripoff of the end of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK that I wonder how he did it with a straight face. I saw this on cable with closed captioning. I would have preferred French dialog with subtitles. The English dubbing is lifeless (with all Europeans using bland American accents), and the captioning frequently disagrees with the audio track, occasionally even mistranslating French idioms. Skip this one unless you just want to skim the action sequences!
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Wasted possibilities in plot and characters
michinine12 September 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Maybe some mild spoilers ahead...

I have no explanation, how you can blow such prospects and ideas in such a crazy way. Dark monks, a old monastery, unbelievable long old tunnels, nazi-stuff, theological backdrop...what a good story could have been possible ? I should have been warned, j.c. Grange the author of the pretty good first movie only "supplied" the characters, Mr. Besson himself fumbled around the rest. If I skip recounting some plot/continuity errors here, I see a pretty visual movie with lots of open ideas, stunning locations and a mythical theme plus a cast which COULD handle a REAL coke, not the coke light decaf served here! Some of the scenes feeled like time fillers which no use than to show that one of the main characters has a trained body. The real problem thought, was the...argh..."ending". But enough ranting - Mr. Besson has way too many open projects on his list (see yourself), the possible result here is the visible lack of depth and story direction. Conclusion: a technically good made thriller for a rainy evening, when you have a too scary girlfriend for heavyweight breathtakers. Probably 6/10, one point bonus for a slightly unchallenged Jean Reno. I hope the never misuse the name again for a baddier third part...

-michael (from europe)
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Poor storyline
mohit_aron17 October 2005
The movie starts in an interesting way and builds up some excitement with the strange murders and reasonably good action sequences. It is poor in offering explanations for why there were people in the modern world that looked so much like Jesus and his disciples and why they believed in the apocalypse.

Towards the end, you find that the overall story was after all quite weak. Specially, the ending is really sub-par. In fact, if Jean Reno and his team hadn't done anything, the bad guys would have killed themselves anyway in the end. I wish the movie ending had been such that Jean Reno and his team somehow helped kill the bad guys or prevent the doom from happening, but unfortunately it was not so.
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Totally stupid scenario
jfseignol29 February 2004
This movie is a shame. How can Besson dare propose such a silly scenario? Besson concatenates clichés of fantastic-techno thriller (religious themes focused on spectacular parts of the Bible, classic former nazi who wants to conquer the world, new-age evangelists, so-called dark-ages secret history,...). The global story is full of incoherences, scenes are illogical between each others, a lot of scenaristic "effects" are ridiculous (the chase with the monk in the hospital, the ambush against Reno with an old german machine-gun turret...). The end of the movie is totally stupid. It is a very bad cameo of Indiana Jones. The dialogues are bad, always cliché. The shooting style is very "clipesque", camera is always moving, lights are totally artificial, very nervous, but it doesn't succeed in hiding the drawbacks of the scenario.
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Very bad script, a lot of incoherence
thibaut_7825 February 2004
Warning: Spoilers
The original movie was not the best movie ever but it was a solid blockbuster ... but the sequel is a so disappointing : - the script is weak, too much incoherence, so many goofs... - a lot of cliché, another film where the bad guys are german and Nazi from the WWII, too easy - Reno's character has lost all is charisma, he seems not to be the same "Niemans" - only Magimel does a good job

No, sorry a bad movie maybe written by a 7 years old kid ?
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Utterly disappointing
mcnpauls30 August 2004
I love it when the French turn out enetrtaining blockbusters: Crimson Rivers and Vidoq spring to mind as examples of very good populist entertainment.

This sequel, though, failed for me at almost every level: thee greeat Jean Reno sleepwalks here, not that he has anything to do anyway, and he even seems to be playing a character with a comp`letely different personality to the one he had in the first film.

The direction and editing both suffer from the dreaded diseases of modern action films: lack of narrative clarity and far far far too many quick cuts that simply leave the viewer confused as to what is going on.

The script is weak, but what can we expect from Luc Besson who has not been involved in any even passable film since "Leon" (itself rather over-rated, but with several excellent features)?

Vincent Cassell is sorely missed. The great Christopher Lee is wasted.

The only thing I liked about the film was the use of the Maginot Line (once considered as a possible secret base for Blofeld in "On Her Majesty's Secret Service), but even then the visual atmospherics potentially available were not effectively exploited.
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Gripping Suspense with Gritty Action and Creepy Monks
Darkknight10116 September 2006
Unlike "The Crimson Rivers" which was a great mystery-thriller, its sequel, "Crimson Rivers 2: Angels of the Apocalypse" is a great action-thriller with mystery elements. This is a rare sequel that surpasses the original, its got great action, great suspense, non-stop thrills, and it has Jean Reno. Jean Reno returns as Investigator Niemans to investigate a body that was found in the walls of a creepy monastery and later teams up with officer Reda played by Benoit Magimel. Both characters are then thrusted into a fiasco of gun-play, killer monks, end-of-the-world scenarios and an underground cult known as Angels of the Apocalypse. If you like dark and gritty action you're going to love this movie, it even has the best chase sequences I've ever seen put on film, so see it, you can thank me later. Plus it has horror, gore, guns, and a really hot female investigator. What else can we ask for in a straight to your face action movie? It's better than the original and its better than "The Da Vinci Code", sorry, I read a comment that some chick said this movie was worse than "Da Vinci", all I got to ask is, What was that chick smoking? THIS IS A GREAT MOVIE.
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Unfortunately as hollow as expected
ariakos26 January 2005
First Crimson Rivers was a great movie. A bit like French vision of David Fincher's Seven. This sequel, though, does not deliver as well. It lacks the depth, atmosphere and character development of the first Crimson Rivers. The plot in this sequel is quite silly: monks, apocalypse and Nazis... quite original. Not.

Christopher Lee was awesome, but in my opinion he would have deserved more screen time. Now his motivations and character personality were left way too vague. Jean Reno is always a pleasure to see on screen, but this time he gave a routine-like performance. I wonder if he realized this was to be a below-average suspense flick and nothing more? I bet he did. Benoit Magimel was a new face to me, and I think he did quite well. Although his character Reda was practically exactly same kind of young tough cop as Cassel's Kerkerian on the first Crimson Rivers.

This sequel offers nothing new or interesting compared to it's predecessor. It's still passable fun for a one time rent, though.
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Watch the first one!
j_o_n_i27 April 2004
I've noticed that in French films the "enemies" are too often the Germans. Enough with them! Find someone else. The whole film was unrealistic. Whatever drugs those soldiers might have taken a bullet remains a bullet, not to mention the jump from that height. The climax is reached in the ending though. How the hell did they manage to survive??? They had one chance in a million.

Whatever... I wanted to say I really liked the first one, it was much more intriguing and both Niemans and the other supporting detective were more committed to the case.

I guess it's not easy to make a good acting performance when the plot doesn't inspire you, so i'm not commenting on them.
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Way to low rating for this great thriller.
arktisk_spetakkel10 February 2013
Really? A 5.8 average? That makes no sense. I really don't understand the bad reviews.

I thought this was really entertaining, and was glued to my chair all through the film. Some say I doesn't make sense, but it doesn't make less sense than the Da Vinci code, Stigmata or Rosemary's baby for that matter.

Enjoy it for what it is...a suspenseful thriller with occult/religious overtones. The people who doesn't like this must be into a different kind of genre.

The story was original, and mysterious. The casting for this film was excellent. And extra fun with a small appearance by the ever awesome Christopher Lee. Enjoy!
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Was this rubbish necessary?
MaxBorg8928 September 2005
The original novel was awesome,and so was Mathieu Kassovitz's movie adaptation,starring Jean Reno and Vincent Cassel.Pity the same can't be said for this disappointing,insipid,useless sequel.

Reno returns as Pierre Niemans,having to investigate on a couple of murders perpetrated by superhuman monks.Yes,the concept IS that bad,and yes,the writer IS Luc Besson,who probably should retire considering his most recent works.Instead of Vincent Cassel and Nadia Fares,we get Benoit Magimel and Camille Natta,whose on screen presence is as interesting as that of an insect.

The main title sequence and the opening murders are visually great,but the rest of the film sucks.Reno and Magimel try to compensate the whole thing with some bad jokes,but when even Christopher Lee's portrayal of the Nazi villain seems to be saying "This time they should have typecast someone else",you realize something has gone incredibly wrong.

One of the worst follow-ups ever,and let's hope the third chapter stays in development hell forever.
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same recipe
Kirpianuscus1 April 2019 in the first part. Only the location is different. Like the basic "Les rivieres pourpres", unconvincing story, too much in different forms. As virtues - presence of Magimel and Christopher Lee. As weak part- the less performances, the not the most inspired explanations and plot. The unrealism in too huge doses. And the childish simplicity of details. Not the worst movie, but one who you see only for the effort of actors to save a bad script.
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Raiders of the lost ark on steroids
pumaye11 April 2004
Not totally convincing, but not worst that the previous movie with the same name (and one of the characters, Jean Reno), this French late addition to the plethora of similar movies on the Apocalypse (well, even with the new millennium it seems that the screenwriters still grip on the myth of the destruction of our race) is a mixed bag of interesting cinematographic ideas (the almost invincible friars that run and fight for the better part of the movie are nice to see) and a wretched script (that, like in the previous Rivieres Pourpres, starts titillating the audience - this time with a Christ like figure and the killing of his Apostoles - but in the end fails to deliver). However, the movie is good enough to be seen at least once.
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