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The Fly II (1989)

DVD Cover (Twentieth Century Fox)
Movie Connections:
The Fly
> The Fly (1958)
> Return Of The Fly (1959)
> The Curse Of The Fly (1965)
> The Fly (1986)
> The Fly II (1989)
Genres / Traits:
Horror, Sci-Fi Horror, Science Fiction, Thriller, Insects
Director:
Chris Walas Chris Walas
Starring:
Eric Stoltz Eric Stoltz
Daphne Zuniga Daphne Zuniga
Lee Richardson Lee Richardson
John Getz John Getz
Frank C. Turner Frank C. Turner

4.4 / 10 - Overall Rating

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The almost-human son of "Brundlefly" searches for a cure to his mutated genes while being monitored by a nefarious corporation that wishes to continue his father's experiments. --IMDb
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Review by Chad
Added: March 12, 2005
It's been a few months since we left our characters in The Fly, but now we catch up with Veronica Quaife (now played by Saffron Henderson) who is giving birth to Brundle's child. She delivers what appears to be a cocoon, which hatches open to expose a normal human baby. Unfortunately, Veronica dies after giving birth, so her son Martin (Eric Stoltz) becomes the responsibility of Bartok Industries... the place that Seth worked for and created the telepods under. Note that this reasoning wasn't actually explained, but that's about the only thing I could come up with to account for these events. I could be wrong, but it's not too terribly important anyway.

We find out that Martin has some sort of accelerated growth problem. At four months old, he looks like a six year old, and at five years old, he looks like an adult. He's also incredibly smart, most likely a result of having the genius Seth for a father. He's so smart, in fact, that Anton Bartok (Lee Richardson), the owner of Bartok Industries, offers him a job working for them instead of just keeping him locked up under observation. This sounds great to Martin, so he takes Anton up on his offer... and the job turns out to be researching the telepods. You see, when Seth died, some of the secrets regarding the telepods died with him. Bartok Industries claimed the physical telepods when Seth turned up deceased, and they have figured out how to teleport inanimate objects... but the secret to teleporting living tissue died with Seth. Martin's job is to rediscover these secrets. All is going well for Martin now... he spends his days working on the machines and trying to figure out the problems. Then, he meets Beth Logan (Daphne Zuniga), a research scientist at Bartok. The two fall in love, have sex (an opening for an eventual sequel, no doubt), and things are going even better for our hero. His little world shatters, however, when he learns that he's to become a human-fly hybrid just like his father... and that Bartok knew about this, and were only keeping him around to research him when he transformed.

Here we have the classic case of a sequel that doesn't even begin to compare to the original. While it does have its moments, mostly after the human-to-fly transformation has been completed, it just drags along for the grand majority of the running time. Whereas in Cronenberg's original (well, original remake) we found excellent character development, a riveting storyline, and countless superb scenes, this one is just sub par. For starters, there's really nothing new to the storyline here. Sure, it throws in the whole angle with Bartok Industries to avoid being a complete rehash, but it's basically the same events happening again at the core of the film, but with much less in the way of entertainment. While Cronenberg slowly built up the love interest between Seth and Veronica, making it work out as good as one could expect from an on-screen romance, here we find the love interest between Martin and Beth rushed and forced. Indeed, it plays out a little something like this: Martin meets Beth, he invites her back to his lab, they chat, and they're now madly in love with one another. So much for character development. As a result of this rushed relationship (and the horrific acting), the viewer finds no real reason to care about the characters involved, and it turns the movie into a chore to watch... the main goal for the viewer would be to stay awake until the next kill scene in order to witness some great death effects. Even that doesn't work out in our advantage, however, as these excellent gore effects are few and far between. Really, there's not much to see for most of the running time of the film... after having finished watching the film just one hour ago, I can't recall much in the way of storyline developments or major twists other than the highlights of the movie. The rest just seems to be there to reiterate on the knowledge we've already gained from the original, or useless scenes stuck into the film solely to pad out the running time to hit that coveted ninety minute mark.

As I mentioned, the effects here are quite nice. Martin, in his fully-transformed mode, looks great for a movie monster, but he looks nothing like you'd expect a human-fly to look; nor does he look much like the human-fly that Cronenberg set down in his original envisioning. We also find out what would happen if the human-fly spit out that acid stuff into someone's face as he did with Stathis' hand and foot in the first. The results of this almost made me shed a tear at how beautiful the effects were. Also, we get to witness a man's head being crushed under an elevator... another tear-jerker of a scene. However, all of this effects goodness was short-lived... we get about thirty seconds to witness both death scenes combined, and the novelty of seeing the Brundlefly quickly wears off after he spends a solid half hour walking around not doing much of anything (he even stops to pet a dog while eluding Bartok's many armed guards).

Overall, this one wouldn't really be worth the two buck rental fee, but thankfully, it comes bundled with the only R1 DVD release of The Fly. My advice would be to drop the ten bucks on the double-feature, consider it ten bucks spent on the original, and then watch this sequel on one of those incredibly boring days when there is absolutely nothing else to do. 3/10.
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Lucid Dreams #1: Lucid Dreams - added 05/30/2010, 09:59 PM
Three out of ten sounds perfect for this shit movie. 3/10
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