Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms (1998) starring Matt Battaglia, Andrew Jackson, Eric Bryson, Kevin Rushton, Desmond Campbell, Michael Copeman, Gary Busey, Burt Reynolds directed by Jeff Woolnough Movie Review

Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms (1998)   2/52/52/52/52/5

Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms (1998) starring Matt Battaglia

Soldiering On

The universal soldier project is terminated by the government thanks to budget cuts but the CIA have other ideas and hire a bunch of mercenaries to carry on with the project in secret to use the ability of the Unisols to smuggle drugs. But original Unisol Luc Devereaux (Matt Battaglia) is still at large and still a thorn in people's sides so the mercenaries kidnap reporter Veronica Roberts (Chandra West) and his brother Eric Devereaux (Jeff Wincott).

The "Universal Soldier" series of movies is a curious thing as it was 6 years before we got any sign of a sequel with this made for TV movie which was quickly followed by part III in the same year. Yet just a year later we got a big screen sequel which makes "Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms" & "Universal Soldier III" what some call the unofficial sequels although if you dig deep you will discover they were part of a plan to have a series of TV movies.

Anyway as to "Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms" well with none of the original cast involved and with it starting with the ending of the original recreated with the new cast it gets off to a less than spectacular start. And unfortunately it never gets any better just worst as we have what sadly is a stupid storyline, scenes which feel like they have been lifted or at least inspired by other movies and action which leaves you feeling under whelmed. If this wasn't a sequel to a big screen movie then it would actually be impressive seeing it is a TV movie but it just doesn't match up to the first movie.

The worst thing is the acting but the trouble is that Matt Battaglia is no Jean Claude Van Damme and Chandra West is no Ally Walker which often and especially during the recap scene makes this feel more spoof than sequel. Adding to that sense of spoof is Gary Busey as a bad guy who when he is on screen over acts to make his bad guy bad but only ends up OTT.

What this all boils down to is that "Universal Soldier II: Brothers in Arms" as a sequel is poor and hard going for fans of the original movie. But at the same time when you consider that it is a made for TV movie the production is much better than what you would normally get.