Saturday, March 25, 2017

Poltergeist II: The Other Side

Director - Brian Gibson (The Josephine Baker Story, The Juror)
Starring - JoBeth Williams (The Day After, Childrens Hospital), Craig T. Nelson (My Name is Earl, Creature), and Heather O'Rourke (Happy Days, The New Leave it to Beaver)
Release Date - 1986
Genre - Horror
Tagline - "They're back"
Format - Bluray (Personal Collection) (Screener)

Rating (out of 5):

     As I established in my last review, Poltergeist was a childhood favorite of mine growing up.  As I got older and started to appreciate all horror I can safely say that it is not my favorite horror film.  It is still an amazing film that I would recommend for not only horror fans but movie fans in general.  It has great effects, an amazing cast, a story that is unforgiving, and amazing cinematography.  There is a reason Spielberg attached his name to it.  However, as much as I love the first film I had never seen the sequel.  I think this is mostly because my local video store didn't carry it and I never ran across it in the wild.  I had heard a lot of great things about it but I never had the opportunity present itself to check it out.  That changed when my friends over at Scream Factory released it on blu and was kind enough to send it my way.  Thanks guys!
     The film once again follows the Freeling family who now lives with Diane's mother after losing everything in the events in the first film.  They think they left the horrors behind them but they did not.  They quickly find that they are still being haunted by the spirits from the graves of their old home but soon meet Taylor, a Native American who believes he can help them.  They reluctantly accept his offer to help them and do so at the right time.  They are soon greeted by a strange old man named Kane and learn that he was a religious figure that had his followers placed in a cavern in preparation for the second coming but when it fails to show he refused to let them leave where they all died and then the Freeling's home was built above the cavern.  Now they must fight Kane and his followers in order to keep Carol Anne.
     I never had a drive to see this film.  I don't know if it was because my local video store didn't carry it that made me think it was a bad film or because I never could find it at other video stores but I never had an interest in it.  Damn, I was a fool because this movie fucking ruled.  I wished I would have watched this one when I was younger because I know I would have been amazed by it even more so than I am now.  The acting in this one is more of the same with the first film with one exception.  That one exception is Julian Beck who plays the character Kane.  This is easily one of my favorite villains in a movie now.  I absolutely loved his portrayal of the religious zealot on the hunt for Carol Anne.  He is the true definition of scary and I love it.  The remainder of the cast is great, as we expected, but Julian steals the show.  The story for this one is more on the existing story set forth in the first film.  It does make it a little more absurd with the secret cavern under their house where Kane and his followers died but without that part the rest of the story would fall apart.  I, also, thought it was cool how they added the religious cult to the mix.  I've always found these interesting and seeing this in a Poltergeist film was pretty cool.  Finally, this is another film full of visual effects.  Some are pretty cool while others are still very dated.  If you are looking for blood you may want to check out another horror franchise.  Overall, Poltergeist II: The Other Side was fucking fantastic.  It picks up very well where the other story left off and gave horror history another outstanding villain.  Check it out.

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