Akin to The Raid 2 in it lacking what made the first film stand out. Gone is the momentum and excess of the original, as is a B-movie focus on fun. Instead, we get an elaborate plot with too many lulls in its action, and an attempt at dramatic deepening, which isn't Adkins or Florentine's strong suit. The action scenes are good, but lack the first's intensity, violent spectacle, and are less varied and quite samey.
florentine continues to refine his staging; the distance he has travelled as a choreographer of action since the first 'ninja' is astonishing. the undisputed films make better use of adkins' peculiar charisma (like shintaro katsu, another star whose physicality dominates his performances, he truly dominates the screen in a more off kilter role), but there is no denying his achievement here. which makes it more...
"Ninja II" is a lean action/thriller that moves from crisply photographed fight scene to fight scene with a ruthless efficiency recalling the shadowy assassins of its namesake. The frequent bursts of kinetic violence go a long way towards making the movie's standard revenge plot more palpable; when you get down to it, this is essentially late 80's Golan-Globus film remade for a post-"The Raid" audience.
Refreshingly efficient; relentlessly satisfying. This is Florentine hewing his craft in all the right ways, scaling back his visual tics while drawing clear sight lines from first punch to final knockout. DTV cinema with more intelligence than all of the year's action films put together. Nothing has come close since, well, Day of Reckoning. The villain is also insanely cool. Cannot stress that enough.