AUTHOR, JOURNALIST, TV PERSONALITY
Bianca Del Rio (Hurricane Bianca 2: From Russia with Hate) is back and this time around relies way too heavily on cheap gags to substitute for its limited plot development ...
Hurricane Bianca 2: From Russia with Hate is the continuation of Bianca Del Rio’s (Roy Haylock) adventures. The RuPaul’s Drag Race alumnus this time around heads to Russia in the limited-on-laughs sequel that focuses far too hard on lipstick, lashes and drag queen banter instead of its political concept, which simmers away in the foreground failing to get started until it’s far too late in the day to work.
Bianca’s story picks up shortly after Richard Martinez (Bianca Del Rio) wins over the staff and students of Milford High School, sending Vice Principal Debbie Ward (Rachel Dratch) to jail. Upon Debbie’s release she conjures up yet another scheme to do away with Bianca Del Rio by luring her to Russia to accept a teaching award and cash prize.
When Richard and his friend Rex (Doug Plaut) arrive in Russia, Debbie is right behind them orchestrating her campaign of hate with her daughter, Carly (Molly Ryman). But not everything goes according to plan when Carly is mistaken for a drag queen and is thrown into jail with Rex, forcing Richard to bring Bianca Del Rio out of retirement and form an unlikely partnership with arch nemesis Debbie Ward to free their nearest and dearest before it’s too late.
Hurricane Bianca 2: From Russia with Hate doesn’t do anything particularly wrong, neither does it do anything particularly original to warrant its rental time. The laughs that were so prevalent in the 2016 incarnation are long gone and the ones that do generate the
odd chuckle have already played out on RuPaul’s Drag Race, which has evolved from a fringe alternative to Project Runway into a cultural phenomenon. Director and writer Matt Kugelman (Hurricane Bianca) clearly had a few more zeros on the end of the budget this time around and he does a decent enough job to convey that by turning Bianca Del Rio’s larger-than-life character into somewhat of a caped crusader by the fourth act. Additionally Kugelman and Derek Hartley (co-writer) do just about enough to move the character to the next media stratosphere, television, where Hurricane Bianca belongs and began life.
Overall, Hurricane Bianca would certainly be a worthy televised sitcom thanks to the character’s bullet-speed barbs and outrageous costume changes. A 35-minute show would be fitting for its double-edged silliness but as a feature film it just doesn’t work. Sure, it has imaginative charm with a sly subversive nature and Dratch’s face-off with Haylock makes for entertaining viewing, but it’s still 80 minutes too long.
Hurricane Bianca 2: From Russia with Hate is available on VOD and DVD now.
Hurricane Bianca 2: From Russia with Hate
18 May 2023
Review / Published 26 August 2023 @ 20:00 PM
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