The 2nd

Acting careers are funny things which are hard to predict. When Ryan Phillippe first appeared on the big screen I am sure most people bet on him having a long career of being the heartthrob. His good looks and piercing blue eyes seem to make that a safe bet. Yet here we are 25 years later (has it really been that long?!?) and he is now largely making his living as an action/cop/shooter type guy in series like Shooter and Big Sky and films like Catch Hell, Reclaim and this one, The 2nd.

I guess you could say the same thing about Phillippe’s foe in the film, Casper Van Dien. He started off in Saved by the Bell, Beverly Hills, 90210 and even played James Dean in a film. Heartthrob. It is one of the hardest gigs to keep a hold of it seems.

Now, both are doing films which can only be classified as “not unless I have watched everything else on Netflix” types. Oh, how the hotties have fallen.

Directed by Brain Skiba (The Jonas Project, Defending Santa), a guy who has directed an inordinate amount of Christmas films, it is a story of why you should not be late picking your kids up. Even if your kid is in college.

A group of terrorists led by a guy simply known as Driver (Casper Van Dien) are hired and tasked with the kidnapping of the teenage daughter of a Supreme Court Justice in order to force him to rule their way in a Second Amendment case.

This kidnapping is to happen at the college Erin (Lexi Simonsen – Roller World) attends which is breaking for the holidays. She and fellow student Shawn (Jack Griffo – Those Left Behind, Sound of My Voice) are the only ones left on campus.

She is waiting for a driver sent by her father (Randy Charach – Beyond the Law, Sky Force 3D) while Shawn is waiting for his father, Vic (Ryan Phillippe), who is late. Vic arrives just as the kidnapping is happening.

As Vic is part of the Special Forces he knows how to handle situations like this. Though they are greatly outnumbered by the terrorist group, the three put up quite a fight.

The oddities or links in this film to modern day topics like the 2nd Amendment and public officials being “manipulated” in different ways to back laws which cater to the redneck slice of the American population is rather interesting. But, really, I am grasping by calling this interesting. Or anything about the film.

Problems abound here. There are so many holes in this film that there are actually more holes than coherent story. Then there is the acting which by calling it wooden would actually be an overstatement.

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