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|"Crocodile" Dundee II|
Theatrical release poster by Dan Gouzee
|Directed by||John Cornell|
|Produced by||John Cornell|
|Written by||Paul Hogan|
|Music by||Peter Best|
|Edited by||David Stiven|
|Box office||$239.6 million|
"Crocodile" Dundee II is a 1988 action comedy film and the second of the Crocodile Dundee films. It is a sequel to Crocodile Dundee (1986) and was followed by Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles (2001). Actors Paul Hogan and Linda Kozlowski reprise their roles as Mick Dundee and Sue Charlton, respectively, here shown opposing a Colombian drug cartel.
A year has passed since the events of Crocodile Dundee, and Mick Dundee and Susan "Sue" Charlton are living happily together in New York. Although Mick's ignorance of city life is a hazard when he attempts to continue his former lifestyle, like blast fishing in Manhattan's waters, Sue's writing has made him a popular public figure. He later goes to work for Leroy Brown, a mild-mannered stationery salesman trying to live up to his self-perceived 'bad guy in the streets' image.
While working for the DEA in Colombia, Sue's ex-husband Bob (mentioned, but not seen, in the first movie) takes photographs of a drug cartel leader's murder of an unknown person, and is spotted by one of the cartel's sentries. He sends the photographs to Sue before being murdered himself. Colombian Cartel leader Luis Rico and his brother and top lieutenant, Miguel, go to New York City to retrieve the photos.
The gangsters take Sue hostage, leading Mick to ask Leroy for help. Leroy contacts a local street gang, whom Mick asks to create a distraction by caterwauling at the mansion's perimeter, leading most of the cartel's guards on a wild goose chase while Mick rescues Sue. Rico goes into hiding to avoid arrest, and after his henchmen fail a subsequent attempt to kill Sue, Mick decides to take Sue to Australia to fight on familiar ground. In Walkabout Creek, Mick is enthusiastically welcomed back by friends. After provisioning, he and Sue take refuge on his personal land, named Belonga Mick ('Mick's Place'; see bilong in Tok Pisin). Here, Sue discovers that Mick legally owns land almost twice the size of New York State, including a gold mine.
Rico and his men track their quarry to Australia, where they hire some local thugs to assist them, but their Aboriginal tracker abandons them when he hears that their quarry is Mick (the implication being that Mick is a good and respected friend of his). The gangsters then take Mick's friend Walter as a hostage, but Mick saves his friend by faking an attempt on Walter's life. Walter convinces the gangsters that Mick's failed attack was due to Walter being the only person suitable to guide them, so they take him as a replacement tracker. He then leads the gangsters on a false trail through the Outback territory, during which Mick, with the help of his Aboriginal friends that he summoned with a bullroarer, manages to reduce the opposition's numbers one by one, leaving the rest increasingly nervous. In the end, he retrieves Walter from Rico and Miguel, leaving the latter to face him alone.
Tired of chasing Dundee, Rico sets a bushfire to corner Mick, but Mick regains the upper hand, captures Rico, and switches clothes with him to lure Miguel into a vulnerable position. Sue and Walter, observing them from a distance, mistake Mick for Rico and take shots at him. Walter shoots Mick, though not fatally, and Rico tries to escape but is shot by Miguel (who mistakes him for Mick). Rico loses his balance and falls to his death in an escarpment. Miguel is, in turn, shot and killed by Sue. Though thinking at first that Mick is dead, they soon re-unite with him (Walter's bullet had only hit Mick in the side), and Sue and Mick embrace. When Mick asks her whether she is ready to go home, Sue replies "I am home", concluding the film.
Crocodile Dundee II was also a worldwide hit, but not as big as its predecessor.
The film was released theatrically in the United States by Paramount Pictures in May 1988. For its first six days of American release, its box office receipts of US$29.2 million exceeded those of Rambo III at $21.2 million. It grossed $109,306,210 at the box office in the United States and Canada. It was the second highest-grossing film that year for Paramount (second only to Coming to America) and the sixth highest-grossing film at the United States box office.
Janet Maslin of The New York Times deemed the sequel to be inferior, noting "the novelty has begun to wear thin, even if Mr. Hogan remains generally irresistible". Variety called the film "a disappointing follow-up to the disarmingly charming first feature with Aussie star Paul Hogan. [This] sequel is too slow to constitute an adventure and has too few laughs to be a comedy — resulting in a mildly entertaining 111 minutes that has much less of the freshness and spark that legions of filmgoers loved in the original". Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune gave the film two-and-a-half stars out of four and wrote that it "has too much action initially, losing its trademark, gentle touch for the first half of the movie. The film is much more compelling in its concluding scenes in the Australian outback than in its comedy-action scenes in New York City that open the film. The result is that we leave the theater with a bit of a smile, but just a bit. It's not a steady, complete film." Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times was generally positive, calling it "almost as much fun the second time around. As an adventure, it's nothing special, yet it's an inspired and good-humored presentation of one of the freshest, most likable screen personalities to emerge in the past decade." Hal Hinson of The Washington Post called the film "about as laid-back a movie as you're ever likely to nap through. The actors take forever to recite their lines, and scenes unfold as if the filmmakers had rented the screen by the month." Hinson added that Cornell "seems not to have understood that for Dundee's heroic laconicism to work, the world around him has to have some energy, it's got to move. But Cornell doesn't know how to create pace or movement. He directs as if he were swinging in a hammock."
As of March 2020, the film has a score of 10% on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes from 29 reviews, with an average 3.52/10 rating. On Metacritic the film has a score of 41% based on reviews from 21 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale, the same grade as its predecessor.