The Substitute 2

release year: 1998
genre: action
viewing setting: home DVD, 5/18/13 and home laserdisc, 8/16/98

synopsis: Ex-special forces soldier avenges his brother's murder by a high school gang.

impressions: It wasn't as good as the original - it seemed to clone the basic formula - but it did have some decent ass-kicking. One cool scene has Treat Williams explaining the basic concepts of hand-to-hand combat while demonstrating it as a guy tries to stab him with a knife. His brother's daughter was kind of a dumb character who didn't listen and didn't think. As in the original movie (not to mention 90% of movies from this genre) the hero left enemies alive, which led to heartache later as they came back and killed people he cared about. In this movie, that key moment happened at 1:15:30 when every bad guy around was stunned by an exploding gas tank. The good guys just fled, when the proper move would have been to walk among the fallen bad guys and put two in each one's head to end the threat. Oh well, you've gotta go with the formula, I guess. The ending also felt somewhat rushed, as if they were running out of time and money and had to get the film done.

activation point: 37:00 - this is when Mr. Smith proves beyond any shadow of a doubt that he's in charge of the class

asses kicked by Treat Williams: 6

body count: 8 (not counting 2 random sniper shots)

acting: Treat Williams did a decent job, as did several of the supporting cast. Nothing exceptionally good or bad here.

final word: Watchable action.

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