22 November 2009 | lost-in-limbo
A second serving of cheesy terror.
Picking up from where the original left off (and it does go on to clear up loose ends) we see Andrew Steven's character David wandering through the desert heading for another underground scientific base that his team was originally in contact with in the first film. On the way there, he also picks up a lady survivor where they would become more than acquaintances with her soon expecting. Those survivors at the base are waiting on David, who holds a vaccine for the spreading virus, but what awaits them when David and the girl get there is hideous mutations.
Roger Corman would also produce the sequel (that looks just as cheap) that came two years later with star Andrew Steven (who here had me thinking of him as a poor man's Kurt Russell) not only acting, but directing and also penning the material in another quite low-budgeted, muggy B-grade offering. Tick off; Mushy make-up effects, lousy props, a tad of nudity, clunky dialogues, junky set designs and gratuitously raw violence. At times it reminded me of the Corman produced alien clone --- "Forbidden World". Surprisingly I see this film cop a lot criticism when compared to the first, as I don't see it to be any worse. Sure I wouldn't call it a perfect movie, but in certain regards I enjoyed this follow-up more than the original film. On this occasion it tries to be slightly different in its ideas and execution, but still sharing similarities but consisting of more excitement. It does go on to rehash certain moments in the latter stages. However there seems to be a little more happening story wise (when focusing on Steven's character in the desert or that of a mutating finger from a gargoyle) and its quick tempo makes sure it doesn't wear out its welcome. Steven's practical handling startlingly generates energy and a bit of tension amongst the monster gruel. He's not as confined, but goes for more expansion despite the obvious limitations but these murky visuals/lighting makes for some much needed atmospherics. The cast are all committed with ever reliable R Lee Emery's commanding presence heading the way. Andrew Stevens (sporting a fashionable beard) is sturdy enough in the heroine role, Burton Gilliam is particularly amusing, Chick Vennera is fitting and Stella Stevens (yes that's Andrew's mother) is agreeably good too. What's this type of film without beautiful ladies; in the shape of knockouts Barbara Alyn Woods, Renée Jones and Clare Hoak.