The Fly II – USA, 1989 – reviews

The Fly 2

The Fly II – aka The Fly 2 – is a 1989 science fiction horror film starring Eric Stoltz (Haunted Summer; Anaconda) and Daphne Zuniga (The Dorm That Dripped Blood; The Initiation).

The film was directed by former special effects designer Chris Walas from a screenplay by Frank Darabont (A Nightmare on Elm Street 3; The Blob) and Jim and Ken Wheat (Pitch Black) as a sequel to David Cronenberg’s 1986 film The Fly, itself a remake of the 1958 film of the same name.

Stoltz’s character in this sequel is the adult son of Seth Brundle, the scientist-turned-‘Brundlefly’, played by Jeff Goldblum in the 1986 remake. With the exception of stock footage of Goldblum from the first film, John Getz (Killer Bees; Zodiac) was the only actor to reprise his role.

On the DVD commentary track, Chris Walas, states his belief that screenwriter Frank Darabont wrote Bartok to represent the worst aspects of corporate America.

The Fly II fared well financially, taking $20,021,322 at the US box office and a further $18,881,857 worldwide, but reviews were largely negative. Many believe that Walas set out to repeat the success of the original by relying more on heavy gore and violence than on plot and atmosphere.

However, it is appreciated by many horror fans for its great visual impact. Walas has stated that the film was designed to be much more of a traditional (albeit gory) monster movie than Cronenberg’s horror/tragic love film.

Plot:

Several months after the events of The Fly, Veronica Quaife is about to deliver the child she had conceived with scientist Seth Brundle. Anton Bartok, owner of Bartok Industries (the company which financed Brundle’s teleportation experiments), oversees the labor. Veronica dies from shock after giving birth to a squirming larval sac, which splits open to reveal a seemingly normal baby boy.

Fly II veronica quaife

The orphaned child, named Martin Brundle, is taken into Bartok’s care. Bartok is fully aware of the teleportation accident which genetically merged Seth Brundle with a housefly, a condition that Martin has inherited, and he secretly plans to exploit Martin’s unique condition…

Reviews:

” … while clearly respecting what Cronenberg did before (a loving tribute to the Canadian auteur can even be spotted in one scene, where a security guard reads a book called The Shape of Rage), Walas appears to understand that what he’s making isn’t high art, but a fun horror flick.” Ryan Lambie, Den of Geek!

fly-03_0

“Sadly all the action takes place in these colorless fake looking science labs where you don’t ever get a glimpse of the sun, but you do have to bump into Daphne Zuniga from time to time … There is nothing resembling a pace or even a pulse here, and you just sort of wait and wait for special effects artist turned director Chris Walas to get to the underwhelming finale.” Kindertrauma

fly-2-face-burned-off

It’s bad enough when a botched experiment leaves a dog mangled and deformed, but how about when Eric Stoltz later discovers his old pet is still alive, living in a dungeon, barely able to lick food out of its bowl. It’s heartbreaking to watch the dog, which looks like living road kill, start to wag its tail and whimper upon sight of its old human friend. And even more heartbreaking when Stoltz ends its pain. Seriously. You want horror? Forget The Exorcist. Screw The Blair Witch. Try and make it through the dog scene in The Fly II. I dare you.” Into the Dark

Starlog cover Fly II

Cast and characters:

  • Eric Stoltz … Martin Brundle
  • Daphne Zuniga … Beth Logan
  • Lee Richardson … Anton Bartok
  • John Getz … Stathis Borans
  • Frank C. Turner … Shepard
  • Ann Marie Lee … Jainway
  • Garry Chalk … Scorby
  • Jerry Wasserman … Simms
  • Lorena Gale … Woman
  • Saffron Henderson … Veronica Quaife
  • Jeff Goldblum … Seth Brundle [uncredited archive footage]

2 Comments on “The Fly II – USA, 1989 – reviews”

  1. Like a popcorn version of the first one (the Cronenberg one not the original). Take your brain out, pig out and watch some guy get his brains pushed out under a lift. Top notch practical FX though for reals.

  2. Never liked this one, except for 3 things. 1. The superlative FX work. 2. The mercy killing of the dog (surprisingly well done and heartbreaking. 3. The excellent comeuppance for the villain. Well, maybe 4, the great return of Stathis Borans. But the rest is not up to snuff.

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