Thanks to falsified dental records supplied by his former neighbor Nicholas "Oz" Oseransky, retired hitman Jimmy "The Tulip" Tudeski now spends his days compulsively cleaning his house and perfecting his culinary skills with his wife, Jill, a purported assassin who has yet to pull off a clean hit. Suddenly, an uninvited and unwelcome connection to their past unexpectedly shows up on Jimmy and Jill's doorstep: it's Oz, and he's begging them to help him rescue his wife from the Hungarian mob. To complicate matters even further, the men, who are out to get Oz, are led by Lazlo Gogolak, a childhood rival of Jimmy's and another notorious hitman. Oz, Jimmy and Jill will have to go the whole nine yards--and then some--to manage the mounting Mafioso mayhem.
This sequel is more afterthought than accomplishment, a cocktail made with orange juice and Champale instead of actual bubbly. Bruce Willis is back as the saturnine hitman Jimmy (the Tulip) Tudeski. Tucked away in a witness-relocation resort-style home, Jimmy is now devoted to being a domestic diva. Meanwhile, the dentist Oz Oseranky (Matthew Perry) spends his time trying the patience of his wife, Cynthia (Natasha Henstridge). Oz needs Jimmy to help recover Cynthia, whom a mobster has kidnapped to bring Jimmy out of hiding; she's Jimmy's ex. The plotting of the second "Yards" isn't lazy, and there's one reasonably well-thought-out twist by the screenwriter George Gallo. But Howard Deutsch's staging has the cast members flailing about as if they were trying to get recruited for the next season of "The Apprentice." — Elvis Mitchell
2004-04-09 | Elvis Mitchell | Read the New York Times Review of The Whole Ten Yards