Red 2

Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
Red 2 Movie Poster Image
Sloppy, cartoonishly violent sequel fails to match original.
  • PG-13
  • 2013
  • 116 minutes

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 15 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages
The movie's general message (aside from revisiting the first movie's notion that older folks are still useful/relevant) seems to be that going on adventures and killing lots of people is just what's needed to spice up a romantic relationship. One character kills for the first time and, though she appears shaken for a moment or two, faces no other consequences.
Positive Role Models & Representations
No worthwhile role models to speak of; the behavior here is childish and without remorse.
The movie's violence is largely bloodless, except for one or two violent martial arts-style fist fights, which leave characters with various bleeding cuts on their faces. Many, many characters are shot and killed, and some are stabbed to death. There are car chases and explosions, and a nuclear bomb goes off that apparently harms no one except its intended target. A character casually disposes of a body using acid and a bathtub.
Couples kiss. Characters also (comically) kiss other people as a means of deception or to get information. In one scene, a character is strip-searched. He's seen shirtless and from the back, with the top of his buttocks just showing. In one scene, a man admires a lady's foot and then sniffs her shoe. The cover of a Penthouse Magazine is briefly shown, in a wide shot, with no nudity. Some sexual innuendo.
"S--t" and/or "bulls--t" is used a few times. Other words include "bitch," "son of a bitch," (and the slangy "bi-atch"), "balls," "bastard," "suck it," "d--k," "damn," "ass," "crap," "goddamn," "oh my God," and "hell."
The movie opens in a Costco, with the Kirkland brand visible in several shots. A can of Pringles comes in handy during a fight. A Papa Johns pizza restaurant provides access to a secret tunnel, and the characters have pizza while they dig. In a secret hideout, a character eats an old Moon Pie, and a can of SPAM is visible.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Verbal references to LSD and acid, and characters drink shots of vodka in one scene.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that action/comedy Red 2 is the (disappointing) sequel to 2010's successful Red, and many of the characters (played by Bruce WillisJohn MalkovichHelen MirrenMary-Louise Parker and others) return. Violence is again the main issue, with crazy, explosive, cartoonish action/fighting/shooting scenes throughout. Characters are stabbed, shot, and killed; there are bloody martial arts fights and lots of crashes and explosions. The good guys face no repercussions for any of the violent acts they're involved in. Language is fairly minor, with a few uses of "s--t" and "bitch." Expect some brief sexual references and situations; hard drugs (LSD and acid) are also mentioned, and characters drink vodka in one scene. Commercialism is fairly strong, with several brands featured onscreen.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byteddymom July 31, 2013


This sequel was so unlike the first movie, Red, that they should have named it something other than Red 2. Gratuitous violence added nothing to the movie other... Continue reading
Written byAnonymous November 26, 2018

The butt review

Red 2 is a good movie for kids 12 and up. There is some action and a little cussing like sh*t and b*tch. Nothing to bad for kids.
Teen, 13 years old Written byram234533ds May 9, 2020

Not as good or is it??

This is another great action film. Not as good as the first but still great. The violence isn’t too bad. Plain pg13. There is some language too. Over all a... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byTheLegend1 June 19, 2018

Love it to bits

This is so hilarious. But there are lots of fighting in this but there isn’t much blood in it. Some sex references is in this but it’s not as bad.

What's the story?

Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) is now in a committed relationship with Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker). He wants to keep her safe, but she longs for more adventure, and Frank's buddy Marvin (John Malkovich) tries to encourage him to liven things up. Sarah gets her wish with Frank and Marvin suddenly find themselves labeled as international terrorists, with top killers out to get them. These include old friends like Victoria (Helen Mirren), as well as the deadly Han Cho Bai (Byung-hun Lee) and Frank's old flame, Katja (Catherine Zeta-Jones). If our heroes can locate a secret weapon stashed somewhere in Russia, they can clear their names. But this effort depends on finding a scientist long thought to be dead, as well as avoiding gunfire everywhere they go.

Is it any good?

Following up 2010's successful and enjoyable Red, RED 2 has a new director and some fresh cast members, but overall the sense is of a general lack of care. The movie clearly doesn't have much going on, so director Dean Parisot moves things quickly in a vain effort to keep viewers from noticing. The plot jumps back and forth between major cities all over the world with little logic.
The general rhythm also suffers, with great lurches and cheats all over the place. This subsequently affects the performances. Willis tries some aggravated double-takes that are cut short, and Parker's broad performance almost resembles an old-time comic drunk. Only Malkovich slides underneath the movie's messy fabric for some smooth one-liners. But perhaps most disturbing is Red 2's chaotic, cartoonish violence. No one here seems to care whether innocent people die as they go about their quest to save the world.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Red 2's violence. Why is it so over the top? Does the humor that accompanies it affect its impact?

  • When Sarah makes her first kill, how does she react? What are the consequences of her actions?
  • Did you notice any stereotypes in the movie? How does it portray older people? Are they intended to be role models?
  • How does this sequel compare to the original?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love thrills

Themes & Topics

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