Review: Dinner at KFC 2: Steve Anderton's Battle by Jack DeakinReviewer
Jack Deakin's Dinner at KFC 2: Steve Anderton's Battle, a sequel to a movie made almost fifteen years ago, is an entertaining and welcome return to form for the director who has emerged from a 3D Movie Maker hiatus of several years. More ambitious and original than its prequel (the first film was essentially a remake of a scene from one of Rob Enduro's Augustin Burger movies), Dinner at KFC 2 follows the one and only Colonel Sanders as he finds his share of the fried chicken market threatened by the mysterious Steve Anderton, whose new restaurant begins to cut into the Colonel's business.

In a puzzling reversal of the usual pattern, the movie's hero is the owner of the dominant global chain, whereas the role of the villain goes to the small, independent store owner. I'm not sure what kind of message that sends, but the story works well enough and the simplicity of it leaves Jack with a lot of room for side gags and action. The scene with the policeman Sanders hires attempting to steal some of Anderton's chicken from a small boy made me chuckle. I also laughed at the "reveal" of Anderton's scheme. Although I admit I wasn't crazy about the scene at the very end, which is yet another recreation of that same beloved Augustin Burger scene.

The animation stands several notches above that of the typical 2020 release. Jack rarely uses default scenery, and when he does, it is generally disguised (or at the very least, embellished) by custom details. The detailed menus and logos in the KFC restaurant make you briefly forget we're in the default nickelodeon restaurant. Known in the community as a talented maker of models, Jack employs heavy use of his large, impressive setpieces. The restaurant interior and the city streets that Sanders and Anderton fight in were particularly memorable. When it comes to the character models, Colonel Sanders is very well constructed. I don't know if it was intentional or not, but the simple, polygon-like textures used for Sanders provide the effective illusion that the character is made using default shapes. I don't know if I'm explaining it well, but the model very much "fits in" with the look of 3D Movie Maker (unlike the earlier version from the first movie). The effort put into the Colonel could not be more at odds with the apparent effort put into Steve Anderton. The model of Anderton is unimpressive; his pixelated, discolored face does not even remotely match the rest of his head.

Considering Jack hadn't released a movie since 2014, and his later releases were not as good as his earlier films (namely his masterwork, Police Heroes), this was a pleasant surprise, one which I enjoyed watching and hope that other members of the community take notice of.


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