Picks and Pans Review: "crocodile" Dundee Ii

updated 05/30/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 05/30/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

To entice audiences into lining up for another adventure in the life of the Australian woodsman Mick Dundee, Paul Hogan has more than doubled the original film's $6 million budget. You'll hardly notice. That's meant as a compliment. The first Croc ingratiated itself by keeping everything—violence, sex, humor—low-key. Croc II, scripted by Hogan and his son Brett, 28, wisely follows suit. Hogan is a world-class charmer; he can impress more with a wink than Rambo can with an arsenal. This is lucky, since the story is as slight and silly as before. Last time, Mick spent the first half of the picture in the bush, the second half in Manhattan. This time, he begins in Fun City and ends up in the bush. You won't get woozy from following the plot twists. Mick is still involved with that sexy reporter, played by Linda Kozlowski. While she works, he busies himself with such activities as dynamite fishing; he blows the finny creatures out of New York Harbor. But Mick is the real fish out of water. He craves action. He gets it when his ladylove runs afoul of some big-city drug lords. After several narrow escapes (he's aided in one by Japanese tourists who mistake him for "Cwint Eastwod"), Mick decides the Outback is the only place he can really protect his woman. Off they go, the baddies in hot pursuit, for a business-as-usual climax, The fun comes in watching Hogan react to such sight gags as the subway, a punk gang and a pal-turned-rip-off-artist who calls himself "Gator" Dundee. Ramshackle as it is, Croc II fizzes like a summer tonic. Hogan fans will grin with pleasure. G'day again, mate. (PG)

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