F/X 2: The Deadly Art of Illusion (1991) - Rotten Tomatoes

F/X 2: The Deadly Art of Illusion (1991)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

A special effects expert agrees to help the police catch a serial killer, but becomes a patsy for corrupt cops.
Action & Adventure , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Orion Home Video

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Bryan Brown
as Roland "Rollie" Tyler
Brian Dennehy
as Leo McCarthy
Philip Bosco
as Ray Silak
Kevin J. O'Connor
as Matt Neely
Tom Mason
as Mike Brandon
Dominic Zamprogna
as Chris Brandon
John Walsh
as Rado
Lisa Fallon
as Kylie
Lee Broker
as DeMarco
Philip Akin
as Detective McQuay
Tony De Santis
as Detective Santoni
Ross Petty
as Consiglieri
Dee McCafferty
as Chamblis
Jeri Craden
as Aunt Kate
Phil Jarrett
as 1st IAD Cop
Richard Sali
as 2nd IAD Cop
James Stacy
as Cyborg
Neil Elliot
as Movie Effects Man
Leland Crooke
as Movie Director
Biff Yeager
as Police Sergeant
Foster Fell
as Policeman
Jack Orend
as Wino
Jenifer Chatfield
as Movie Scriptgirl
Kurt Reis
as Judge
Damir Andrei
as Defense Attorney
Charles Ivey
as Defendant
Caroline Yeager
as Desk Sergeant
Arlene Duncan
as Hooker
Robert Kennedy
as Computer Store Clerk
Dwayne McLean
as Mall Guard
Gerry Quigley
as Supermarket Manager
Harvey Chao
as Chinese Vendor
Harry Booker
as Prison Priest
Bob Clout
as Confessional Priest
Jack Newman
as Art Expert
Walker Boone
as 1st Mansion Guard
Michael Rhoades
as 2nd Mansion Guard
Gene Mack
as 3rd Mansion Guard
Shane Cardwell
as 1st Mobster
Michael Woods
as 2nd Mobster
Matt Birman
as 3rd Mobster
Tony Katsaras
as Policeman
Dennis Scott
as 1st Cop
Karl Bauman
as Bluey
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Critic Reviews for F/X 2: The Deadly Art of Illusion

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (2)

There should be a special category for movies that are neither good nor bad, but simply excessive.

Full Review… | October 30, 2001
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

The nifty 1986 sleeper hit F/X was followed by this ridiculous, implausible yet occasionally exciting yarn.

Full Review… | December 12, 2015
Creative Loafing

F/X fans will find themselves enjoying more than a mere sense of deja-vu.

Full Review… | July 28, 2015
Tulsa World

The plot twists, the originality of the FX, and the interaction between Brown and Dennehy make up for minor weaknesses.

Full Review… | July 6, 2010
Georgia Straight

A mediocre sequel that lacks the punch of its highly entertaining predecessor.

February 17, 2006

Lacks the spark and flair of the original.

April 10, 2003
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

Audience Reviews for F/X 2: The Deadly Art of Illusion

Decent movie. It's fairly entertaining, in action, comedy, and effects, but the plot and the performances just can't carry it to be a good movie.

Grant Hermanns
Grant Hermanns

The original "F/X" is a personal favorite of mine from the 80s when it comes to the suspense/thriller genre with a good dose of action. Even with that praise I'm hard pressed to believe that it really needed a sequel. The original had a solid rap-up for a good story that did not warrant the audience to revisit. Still five years after the fact "F/X 2" was released not surprisingly to a luke warm response. Everyone's favorite intelligent movie special effects artist Rollie Tyler (Bryan Brown) returns only this time he's given up the special effects business for good and has moved on to making high tech children's toys. This doesn't stop his new lover's ex-husband to ask him to provide some nifty illusions in order to catch a killer. Obviously not learning from his first experience, Rollie accepts and predictably the stunt turns sour with his lover's ex getting his throat sliced. Smelling a cover-up, Rollie enlists the help of his old buddy Leo McCarthy (Bryan Dennehy), now a private detective, to save his life. Typical with sequels the plot is just a muddled down carbon copy of the original. I mean what are the chances Rollie would be part of a police cover-up twice in his life-time... seriously?! His illusion trickery this time around also seem far more forced, shoed-in to the plot in order to meet the audiences expectations in how he outsmarts the baddies (though the mechanical clown is the most memorable). Due to this director Richard Franklin, responsible for the respectable sequel "Psycho II", is handcuffed to the script and Lalo Schifrin's music, though not bad, seems more like a rejected score for "Romancing the Stone". What helps this sequel rise above its predicable plot is the return of its high caliber cast headed by Bryan Brown and Brian Dennehy. In the first "F/X" they were mostly off screen from each other but here they get plenty of time and material to bounce off one another. I also dug how they brought back Dennehy's little crush as the cutesy computer nerd. Their flirting was one of the nice highlights of the original and it's nice to see that aspect brought back. "F/X 2" is a by-the-numbers sequel. It's just plain and simple not as engaging as the first trying desperately trying to make up for the fact by shoe-horning in scenes of "movie magic" despite our character not even being in the profession any longer. The chemistry between our two leads makes it worth a watch but not worth a hunt. If you can find it in a double feature with the first "F/X" then I say go for it as it is watchable, just not memorable.

Eric Reifschneider
Eric Reifschneider

Half-hearted followup to the first film isn't nearly as good.

Anthony Valletta
Anthony Valletta

Super Reviewer

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