If the joke “I have 5 kids and 18 Costco cards” (uttered by actor Bill Bellamy) makes any sense to you, then perhaps Kindergarten Cop 2 is your kind of movie. More of a remake and less a real sequel, this unexpected film stars action hero Dolph Lundgren in the role of Agent Reed, a tough as nails, zero nonsense cop – with a love for Twix candy – who’s about to get an assignment he never expected.
But if you have any familiarity with the plot of the original Kindergarten Cop, which famously starred Arnold Schwarzenegger (“It’s not a too-mah!”), then I suppose this could be called an expected assignment. In fact, all the major plot points of the original Schwarzenegger/Ivan Reitman vehicle make an appearance in this ‘update’.
Expectedly, Reed goes undercover at a kindergarten school to track down a lucrative USB drive simultaneously sought out by Albanian crime lord Zogu (Aleks Paunovic). The only kicker here is that the school is a politically correct, non-GMO, gluten free, zero-peanut-zone of sensitive children who share their feelings. Yikes.
Obviously, hilarity should ensue at the sight of Lundgren’s lumbering – yet still impressive – muscular body awkwardly and awkwardly navigating through a sea of kiddies, much like his Austrian predecessor. But the film goes through the motions of straight-to-video cliches that pander and focus on “exciting” and “funny” plot points, only to completely miss the mark on both.
After all, hunting down a USB drive at a school is a laborious and tedious process, and one that director Don Michael Paul prolongs excruciatingly as Reed ends up distracted and caught up in the children’s rigorous scheduling. The film is so caught up in adhering to the class schedule that it takes a nap for much of the second act where very little actually happens.
Furthermore, there’s a forced and expected romance with fellow teacher Olivia, played by a stunningly beautiful Darla Taylor. But their romance is so off-putting considering her young and glowing exuberance in contrast to Lundgren’s older demeanor that one could easily confuse her for his daughter. She’s charming but grossly underused, as is Bill Bellamy as Agent Sanders, Reed’s partner, whose character serves very little purpose but to fill up the screen and spit out one-liners.
Kindergarten Cop 2 is as useless as expected, another direct-to-video sequel nobody asked for and few with appreciate. This is a sad, strange attempt to elevate Lundgren to the muscular/comedian pantheon nearly perfected by his frequent co-star Arnold Schwarzenegger, an endeavor Hollywood has been attempting since his minor success with 1985’s Rocky IV. For a so-called comedy, the jokes are little more than a random pastiche of words in hope that its obtuseness would be confused for comedy. Ultimately, the film fails not because it’s trying too hard, but because it’s not trying at all.