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I loved every second of Extraction 2, especially Chris Hemsworth fighting with one arm on fire

Published Jun 18th, 2023 7:27PM EDT
Extraction 2 on Netflix
Image: Jasin Boland/Netflix

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The formula for creating a solid and enjoyable action thriller isn’t all that complicated. For the necessary ingredients, look no further than Netflix’s newly released Extraction 2 — a brash, bombastic, and pulse-pounding sequel that sees the return of Chris Hemsworth’s black ops mercenary Tyler Rake, and which crams nerve-shredding gun battles, tightly shot sequences of chaotic hand-to-hand combat, explosions aplenty, and a steadily rising body count into a two-hour assault on your senses. We’re not talking about Tarantino-quality material here, of course. But what can I say, I loved every minute of it.

In fact, the movie has gotten such a strong reception thus far, that the streaming giant has wisely decided to follow it up with yet another sequel. Extraction 3, Netflix’s annual Tudum event revealed over the weekend, is officially in the works, news that came as millions of Netflix subscribers were no doubt settling in to watch the just-released second installment in the franchise that hit the platform on Friday.

Next-level effects and fight sequences

I’ve been pretty hard on Netflix for the long list of forgettable and paint-by-numbers movies it’s released in the past, never mind the strong viewership that many of them have pulled in. There was a period of several months in 2022, for example, when the #1 Netflix movie every single week was one critical flop after another, all of which were excoriated by reviewers and often audiences alike. We’re talking films like Purple Hearts, Day Shift, and Me Time.

Extraction 2, though, is a cut above almost every Netflix movie released over, at a minimum, the last several months. And it’s thanks in large part to the next-level effects and stunning fight scenes, one of which — an extended prison-break sequence — was a breathless, unbroken set piece lasting a little over 20 minutes that also reportedly took four months to film.

Extraction 2 on Netflix
Golshifteh Farahani as Nik Khan and Adam Bessa as Yaz in “Extraction 2.” Image source: Netflix

The scene consists of Rake springing the family of a Georgian gangster from jail. With the mother and two children in tow, Rake fights and shoots his way out of the prison, through the overrun yard, and finally corrals everyone into vehicles that take them all to a train. There are hidden camera splices throughout, but the effect is of one long, real-time escape scene that continues on the train, with allies of the Georgian gangster at one point landing a helicopter on it and depositing some of his thugs on the roof of one of the train cars.

How viewers are reacting to Extraction 2

The movie, which it should go without saying is currently sitting at #1 on the streaming giant in the US, has as of this writing earned a solid 89% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes (based on more than 500 user ratings so far). The critics’ score, for comparison, currently stands at 75% based on 89 reviews — but, I cannot stress this enough, you’d be well-served by ignoring the critics on this one.

If you enjoy action movies that will keep you on the edge of your seat, and especially if you’re already a fan of this franchise, I can almost guarantee that you’ll find Extraction 2 to be ridiculously addictive and fun and that you’ll have very few complaints once the credits start rolling.

The plot of Netflix’s newest hit movie

As far as what it’s about, viewers will recall that during the first Extraction movie, Hemsworth’s Rake went on a mission to rescue the son of an Indian crime lord. By the time the credits roll, we’re left to assume Rake has died — while Extraction 2 picks right up with Rake recovering and regaining his strength, just in time to undertake an even tougher and more brutal mission.

According to director Sam Hargrave, the original idea was for Rake to actually die at the end of the first movie. “Originally, Joe Russo and I agreed that an arc of redemption felt right for the character of Tyler Rake, and having him sacrifice his life at the end of the movie felt like a fitting end,” Hargrave said in an interview with Netflix. “But when the reactions indicated that this character has legs and people might enjoy another round, we went back in and filmed a new ending.

“Of course, you never really know how a global audience is going to react. So, when the movie dropped in 2020, and the audience responded as positively as they did, we knew we made the right call.”

Extraction 2 on Netflix
Chris Hemsworth as Tyler Rake in “Extraction 2.” Image source: Jasin Boland/Netflix

That decision led to the all-new rescue mission Rake embarks on in Extraction 2, in which he sets out to rescue the Georgian gangster’s family. Have I mentioned how much fun this Netflix movie is yet? In addition to it being a home run for the streamer, In fact, I think I’m going to have to now seek out the franchise’s source material — the 2014 graphic novel Ciudad, by Andre Parks and Joe Russo — while I wait for Extraction 3 to arrive.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.