Under Siege 2: Dark Territory

It’s hard to force myself to watch Steven Seagal movies. But, since I enjoyed Under Siege so much, I thought I’d catch Under Siege 2 for fun.

As introduced in the first film, Steve Seagal’s character, Casey Ryback is a Navy cook. But, are we to believe that’s all he is? Heck no. Ryback is really a highly trained Navy SEAL who is able to disable or kill men with a chop of his hands. He knows many ways to inflict pain to bad guys, and he shows us many.

In Under Siege 2 Casey has retreated to a quiet life as a cook in a big restaurant. Customers come to visit the restaurant not because of the good food but because of Seagal’s shiny personality. Like many other professions, you can take the man out of the Navy, but you can’t take the Navy out of the man. When needed Ryback still goes active with the Navy on top secret tasks. Casey’s brother just died and Casey needs to get out West to pay his respects. Tagging along is his niece-with-an-attitude (Katherine Heigl). Since Casey doesn’t like to fly, he and his niece take a train out West.

Unknowingly to Casey a high-tech group of men want to earn some money and use this train as their mobile headquarters. The group of men wants to earn their money by using a new Navy satellite to strike terror in the heart of the US. They are going to destroy the Pentagon with the satellite which can cause natural-looking earthquakes.

The story is enough to string along the action sequences. The action sequences are fun but rather generic. None of the memorable. Also, Seagal isn’t allowed to show off much of his martial arts skills. Some of those fighting sequences also use some laughable techniques, including one that sped up the film.

As with most all of Seagal’s other films, all the characters are one dimensional cardboard cutouts. Eric Bogosian as the crazed villain, Dane, doesn’t come close to Tommy Lee Jone’s crazed villain in the first film. And director Geoff Murphy isn’t able to create as much excitement as Andrew Davis did in the first. Steven Seagal, well, he is Steve Seagal. His one scene where he has to show some emotion is quite laughable.

Worth mentioning is Basil Poledouris’ score for the film. This is a very thematic score and works well with the film.

Under Siege 2 feels different than the first. The first had a more serious and believable feel to it. This sequel has a silly feel to it and some parts are utterly unbelievable. This is shown with a version of the run-faster-than-a-fireball sequence with a twist. (Lets just say the fireball is replaced with a train).

Though not as good as the first, Under Siege 2:Dark Territory is inevitably fun. If you have two hours to spare, catch Under Siege 2:Dark Territory on video.