The Fly II (1989)
the fly | the fly II | the fly 2 | chris walas | mick garris | jim wheat | ken wheat | frank darabont | eric stoltz | daphen zuniga | lee richardson | sci-fi | sci fi | united states | sequel | john getz | frank c. turner | ann marie lee | monster | monsters
Film: The Fly II
Director: Chris Walas
Writer: Mick Garris, Jim Wheat, Ken Wheat and Frank Darabont
Starring: Eric Stoltz, Daphen Zuniga and Lee Richardson
This film begins with a woman who is having a baby; she is played by Saffron Henderson. She is taking over the role of Geena Davis from the previous film. In an observation room above is the man that is running the company that was paying for experiments that Jeff Goldblum was conducting in the pervious film as well, the head of the company played by Lee Richardson. He is upset that he wasn’t inform of her going into labor until now and apparently it was sudden. Also watching is the ex-boyfriend of Henderson, played by John Getz. He isn’t happy that she is in so much pain. Richardson gives birth to a giant maggot baby and then she dies from complications. Emerging from the maggot though is what looks to be a normal human boy.
The baby has genes that cause it age much faster than it should. At 11 months, the baby already looks like he is four years old, played at this time by Matthew Moore. Richardson states that he will only answer to God in terms of the child, but he tasks two doctors to look after him and conduct experiments. These two are played by Frank C. Turner and Ann Marie Lee. Richardson gains the boy’s trust telling him that he should see him as his father.
This child grows in a couple years to be Harley Cross. We learn that he has a photographic memory and absorbs a lot of information. He has an attitude toward his doctors. Turner wants him to do tests that are below his intelligence level and Lee is not very nice when it comes to giving him his shots. These are to keep his rapid growth in check. Cross learns to sneak out of his room and then get to a different level where Richardson spends most of his time. Cross befriends a dog and sees a traumatic event where the dog is attempted to be teleported by the pods his father created, but it comes out wrong and agitated.
At the boy’s fifth birthday, he is now Eric Stoltz. He is allowed to leave the room he has grown up in and Richardson gives him his own apartment on the campus. He is also given a job working on the research his father created. He successfully teleports a phone, but cannot get anything living. He ends up meeting Daphne Zuniga. They hit it off and start to hang out. Their feelings grow, but there is a problem with Stoltz. The shots are no longer stopping what his happening to him. He isn’t getting older, but other changes are taking place. He also learns that Richardson might not be the nice guy Stoltz that he was.
Can Stoltz cure what is happening to him before it is too late? Has he found a way to stop it? What is Richardson’s real plan for Stoltz?
I should lead off stating that I am a huge fan of the original. This film picks up months after the original. It is interesting in that Davis’ nightmare from the original actually comes true in this one. I thought the concept was good. It seems somewhat realistic that the boy would be born as a maggot, much like a fly. Now someone brought up the point on a podcast I listen to that the gene splicing would mean he would come out merged with it and not grow like he did. This actually goes for the original and this film. I am willing to overlook that. I did have an issue that Stoltz goes into a cocoon before becoming the monster in this film. The reason I have a major issue is that flies do not go into cocoons so it doesn’t make sense. This film has pacing issues, but the overall story isn’t bad. I also absolutely hated the ending. I don’t mind a happy ending if it makes sense, this one doesn’t. For one thing the teleportation wouldn’t work like he has it since one of the people is wearing clothing. Teleporting requires the person to be naked or they could be fused together with whatever comes through.
For the acting, I thought that Stoltz did really well in the lead actually. He needed to play someone who doesn’t have a lot of emotions which he did. He is socially awkward, which makes since being that Stoltz is still a five year old boy in a man’s body. He is also super smart which can hinder someone being able to connect with others. I liked Zuniga as his love interest. She is smart and plays the Davis character in this one well in my opinion. I liked that Getz reprised his role for the minor character that he was. I thought Richardson did great as well. What is interesting about him is that he does come off really caring about Stoltz and then we get see the truth behind him. It isn’t a shock, but still interesting. Turner and Lee are great as the fed-up doctors as well.
First I want to talk about the effects in this film. I actually think they are good. The creature at the end of the film looked to be done with practical effects and I liked it. Now it does have issues like the teeth that it has. Flies don’t have them, but it used the bile that is acid-like which is good. I hated the cocoon though since that doesn’t make sense. The blood and violence of the film was good, but there really isn’t much of that. It all comes at the climax. This film does have editing issues to me. The story coupled with that resulted in the film being boring to me. I was disappointed there. The soundtrack does have a classic feel to it, which I did enjoy.
Now with that said, I wouldn’t recommend this film. The story has a lot of problems. I liked that it continued the first one, but I had an issue in that they should have thought out some of the things a little more to build more realism to a film that we have to bend disbelief so much for. The acting is actually pretty solid and a bright spot of the film. I liked the practical effects that were used. There isn’t a lot of blood and violence, but when we get it, it is good. The editing has some issues and results in a pacing issue. The soundtrack was good though. This is a very average film that is a sequel to a great film. I would only recommend if you want to see the story concluded, if not then I’d avoid this one.
My Rating: 5 out of 10