on July 19, 2004
I'm not saying this just because I am a New Yorker, but GREMLINS 2--THE NEW BATCH is slightly better than the original. First, it's a much less mean-spirited film than the first (which I also gave five stars, but for different reasons). Just the fact that a character who was crushed to death in the first film, shows up in the sequel (wearing a small cast) because he really was likeable, shows that Joe Dante and the scriptwriters were going into this film for the fun of it. Second, the casting was flawless. Whoever chose Tony Randall to do the voice of the strangely-William F. Buckley-sounding, intellectual gremlin was responding to nothing short of divine inspiration. Everyone involved in this production had their hearts in the right places and the effect shows. GREMLINS 2--THE NEW BATCH is an astounding piece of comic fantasy and horror that should endure.
This was one of my favorite movies as a kid. I think it's a lot better than the first Gremlins actually. The special effects are improved quite a bit at the very least. It also has a much more lighthearted tone than the first film.
What I like about this film is it's like a violent family film. It's pretty unique. Monsters killing tons of people, and then getting melted into goo at the end. Sounds pretty violent. Even looks pretty violent. Still, it has a family film feel to it. The gremlins do a lot of cheesy comic routines, appropriate for every member of the family.
I can't see how the good guys were able to play these role with a straight face, because the gremlins are goofy as heck. I like the gremlins. Gizmo is all right too.
If you have kids around the age of 12, rent this for them and see what they think of it.
on December 21, 2005
I really liked the old Gremlins a lot but this is even better. Gizmo is once again a lovable hero. This time the Gremlins are more computer enhanced and look better. One idea that I thought was cool for this movie was a bunch of different Gremlins. There's the vegetable gremlin, the bat gremlin, the spider gremlin and a bunch of other wacky ones. Another thing that I liked about this movie was that their "evil doings" were more lighthearted than in the first. In the first one, their deeds were violent and lifethreatening but at the same time funny. In this one they're all goofy and cartoonish. I really think that these movies are the best!!
on August 4, 2000
Fancy some Gremlin Stew?
Three underrated sequels came out in 1990. Predator 2, RoboCop 2, and Gremlins 2. I remember waiting in the lobby of a cinema in Orlando, Florida before a screening of Back to the Future 3, looking at the cardboard standees for Gremlins 2 and RoboCop 2 side by side. My 9-year-old self was a HUGE fan of the first movies and staring at a standee taller than me, featuring wonderful artwork, for those sequels was big deal for me. I pity kids nowadays who don't have the attention span to soak up little moments like that.
Dante takes everything that was great about Gremlins and cranks it all the way up to a zillion. The original movie was a dark xmas comedy horror with B-movie undertones. The sequel goes so over-the-top it launches itself into the stratosphere and doesn't come back down until the very, very end of the credits. It's just wall-to-wall mayhem with so many in-jokes it'll make your head explode. The movie even attempts to begin as a Looney Tunes cartoon.
Gizmo, now back with Mr. Wing, escapes the curiosity shop after the old man dies and is found by a scientist working at Splice of Life, a laboratory located in the Clamp Premiere Regency Trade Centre and Retail Concourse (a big skyscraper in Manhattan). Working in the art department of that skyscraper is Billy Peltzer, hero of the first film. Billy eventually locates and rescues Gizmo, but he gets wet before Billy can take him home, spawning a new generation of cute, fluffy, malevolent Mogwai (Mohawk, Lenny, Edward G. Robinson-lookalike George, and the absolutely mad Daffy). They eat after midnight at a Yoghurt stand in the lobby. The following day the Clamp building, and all of the tenants (from the Archery Channel to the movie print itself, leading to an amusing cameo from Hulk Hogan) are besieged by a horde of gremlins intent on mass destruction and good times at any cost.
One can accuse the film of having no story beyond giving the Gremlins a lively backdrop for their wild antics, but when you're having so much fun isn't that what matters most? Goldsmith's score (sadly underrepresented on the 22-year-old Varese Sarabande CD) has a lot more weight second time around, backed-up by a large orchestra and string-based action cues. You'll absolutely love it!
Chris Columbus didn't return for this movie, leaving scripting duties to Charlie Haas. He uses the Gremlins and the location to skewer big city culture and satirize business tycoons. John Glover is brilliant as the easily excitable Daniel Clamp, a Donald Trump-like property magnate who has more money and power than he knows what do with.
It's amazing that a third Gremlins movie was never made. Despite it now being 22 years since Gremlins 2 and 28 years since the first movie virtually every kid knows what the Gremlins are and are familiar with Gizmo (who may well be the cutest thing that ever existed). It's still a huge cash cow and a recognizable brand, and why Warner never greenlit Gremlins 3 is puzzling to say the absolute least.
The Blu Ray presents the film in 1.78:1 1080p but it's not THAT great-looking. It's certainly a step-up from the DVD but the colors don't pop and shine as much as I'd like, and seem oddly muted on occasion. The DTS HD-MA sound fares a bit better. All of the extras from the 2002 DVD have been ported over. For a change, the extras are actually quite good.
The Blu Ray looks and sounds great in 1.78:1 1080p with DTS HD-MA sound and a bunch of old extras ported over from the DVD.
on August 30, 2000
Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)
Gremlins 2: The New Batch,is the sequel to the underrated 1984 classic,Gremlins (well,sort of.) In my perfectly honest opinion,it's much better than the original and as a previous reviewer said,it's the perfect example of how a sequel should be done.
Story: Billy Peltzer (Zach Galligan) from the first Gremlins movie now lives in Manhattan,New York where he works for a super-rich corporation in a Skyscraper.He's an Adult now,lives a good life,and is even married.
When several workers of the corporation try to talk Mr.Wing (Keye Luke) into letting them demolish his shop so they can have room for more businesses,Gizmo (from what I can remember) escapes,but is soon captured by Scientists who work at the corporation.
Billy one day sneaks into the Labratory Gizmo is at and soon starts living with Billy again.However,a maintenace man accidently (and unknowingly) squirts Gizmo with water from a fountain.Gizmo once again spawns more Mogwais,who are MUCH nastier than in the first Gremlins.
They look uglier,are swifter and sneakier,and even use mutagenic chemicals to enhance themselves.Many of them are soon transformed into giant Spiders,flying Gargoyles,Electronic menaces,and one even talks.
Gremlins 2 is unbelieveably better than the original. The acting is once again top-notch.Galligan rocks as Billy, Howie Mandel is still fantastic at voicing Gizmo,the casting is terrific (John Glover is perfect for the role of Daniel Clamp,the corporations boss and founder) and the script is excellent and is quite unpredictable.Dante's direction is even stronger and more solid than the first Gremlins,and gives the film a (truly) hard worked feel to it.
The special effects are also mind blowing,despite that their still not CGI.Gizmo is even cuter and more likeable than in the first Gremlins (he even dresses like Rambo at one point late in the film).The Gremlins are totally brilliant. As I said earlier,they look scarier and nastier than in Gremlins,and the mutated Gremlin effects are absolutely stunning.The Giant Spider Gremlin is a way cool Monster,the Electro-Gremlin rocks big time,and the talking Gremlin is one of the most memorable characters in the History of Hollywood.
As a previous reviewer said,it's not really a sequel to Gremlins.Well,I (personally) tend to call Gremlins 2 a semi-sequel.It picks up where Gremlins left off,but "rips off" Gremlins.The way the Gremlins take over the Skyscraper is VERY similar to the classic theater scene from Gremlins and one Gremlin,Lenny,dresses like a deranged Dentist at one point and wields a nasty dental drill (Lenny is sort of like Stripe from Gremlins,who wielded a chainsaw and was very deranged). I also LOVE the Gremlin with the Spiky Mohawk (who becomes the super cool Spider) and the Electro-Gremlin,just awesome. And tell me you wouldn't want to have Gizmo for a Pet.How could you possibly hate him? He's such a brilliant and original character!
Overall,Gremlins 2: The New Batch is an unbelieveably better sequel that it's predicessor,with a stronger (and better) story even more original than Gremlins,incredible special effects,loveable and memorable characters, countless in-jokes,a wicked finale,and is HIGHLY entertaining and NEVER EVER gets boring.This is even more underrated than Gremlins,which is saying a LOT.
Buy it right now.You DO NOT know what you are missing.
Can't wait for Gremlins 3!
Gremlins 2: The New Batch is one of those rare sequels that's a lot more fun than the original. A virtual live action Looney Tune with more movie references than you can count and some great digs at 80s-90s corporate culture ("Have a powerful day!" urge the PA systems), it's a constant delight. Among the many targets are Yuppies, Batman, Eva Marie Saint, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, movie critics, projectionists, colorization ("Today on the Clamp Cable Network - Casablanca, now in color with new improved happy ending!"), Kander and Ebb musical numbers, Rambo, King Kong and Marathon Man's dentistry scene, re-enacted by a cross-eyed Gremlin version of Ed Wynn, ensuring that if you don't like one joke, another one you will like will probably be along soon. Tony Randell is the standout in the cast as the `Brain' Gremlin, although John Glover's childishly enthusiastic, deliriously misguided and irrepressibly irresponsible Donald Trump-Ted Turneresque mogul nearly steals the show. Even Christopher Lee demonstrates the sense of humor that's so tragically lacking from the man in real life. You also get to see Jerry Goldsmith demonstrating why he never took up acting ("Did she say she saw a rat?"). Stupid fun was never so smart.
The extras are good - a huge batch of deleted scenes, gag reel, brief featurette revealing Gizmo's increasing egomania, trailer and the alternate video remote sequence from the video release as an Easter Egg (the DVD is the original cinema version).
on June 15, 2004
Gremlins 2 is a nice film that is even better than the original. I like how it spoofs everything,and I love the new gremlins.The first batch looked sort of rough and raggedy[but still interesting],while the new batch is bright and vivid.Plus,Gizmo was a blast.I am REALLY looking forward to a third sequal,with CGI/Animatronic gremlins[a sort of Jurassic Park thing].Gremlins 2 is a wild and rowdy romp.
on May 12, 2005
Director: Joe Dante.
Cast: Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, John Glover, Robert Prosky, Robert Picardo, Christopher Lee, Dick Miller, Jackie Joseph.
Rated PG-13 for cartoonish monster violence and language.
Running Time: 107 minutes.
Perhaps one of the most perfect blends of horror and comedy, this sequel to the 1984 cult hit is arguably even better than original. Those crazy flesh-eating marsupials branch out from just tormenting small towns and promote themselves to the big-time--New York City. Zach Galligan and Phoebe Cates return to take on the fiendish ghouls as they invade and terrorize the futuristic New York City high-rise that Billy Peltzer (Galligan) works.
Joe Dante, director of the original "Gremlins", as well as other horror-comedy romps such as "Piranha" and "The Howling", does a stupendous job using the gremlins as not only horrific threats to the main characters, but exploits them for social satire and surprise in-jokes. Superb supporting cast, including Dick Miller once again as the estranged hillbilly who believes that the gremlins are truly the World War II staples that the name infers. An incredibly hilarious, yet terrifying mixture that is underrated, unappreciated, and unbelievably enjoyable. Simply a campy work of art. Note: The gremlin's rendition of "New York, New York" is stupendous.
on August 23, 2002
The relative financial failure of Gremlins 2: The New Batch in its theatrical run was one of the gross injustices of late-'80s, early-'90s cinema. Gremlins 2 is superior to the first in every single way -- richer, funnier, faster-moving, better lit and shot, far better acted, and the script by Charlie Haas is light years ahead of its clumsy Chris Columbus-scripted predecessor.
Gremlins 2 gets my vote for best sequel of all time. While The Godfather, Part II, Terminator 2 and The Empire Strikes Back tend to lead that poll, all these previous entries had pretty strong predecessors. On the other hand, Gremlins, the original film, was an interesting and sometimes funny little film, but Gremlins 2 really improved on every front and came up with something nobody has ever seen before.
Zach Galligan and Phoebe Cates are ten times more interesting in the sequel than in the original, probably thanks to the script. As a condition for director Joe Dante committing to do the sequel the studio had given him full control of the content, and Dante and writer Haas do a tremendous job in weaving this zany world together, which is like Die Hard meets Dawn of the Dead meets Gremlins. The comedic elements are definitely superior, and the concept of giving each gremlin a distinct personality is immediately winning, the "brain" gremlin and the crazy loose-cannon gremlin being especially hilarious. (Phoebe Cates' interactions with the loose-cannon gremlin are just priceless.) The film is ripe with satirical ideas and populated with highly charming characters. In the first Gremlins, the "bad" characters are simply bad without much humanity to them. Here, all the "villainous" characters are given their share of complexity, right down to the riotous ending.
Again, it is baffling to me that the first film, interesting at best and clunky at worst, was a huge box-office hit while this superlative sequel literally ended the franchise. (Dante had said in an interview that the studio, not believing in the film, had opened Gremlins 2 against Dick Tracy in an effort to undermine Warren Beatty's film, thus damaging Gremlins 2's theatrical take.) But that's what video and DVD are for, and if you've never seen this film, it's definitely a winner.
on February 18, 2009
When this came out, it was an amazing movie because these Gremlin creatures looked so lifelike. They still look pretty real. What I like best about this film is that it took the hard edge off the first one and made it more of a comedy. To me, this sequel was more entertaining than the first film and one I would watch a lot more times. It's also family-friendly.
There are so many jokes and wild scenes in here it would many viewings to catch them all. For movie buffs, it's especially fun with all the references to other films in here.
However, it should be pointed out that there are still plenty of scenes where the gremlins are nasty and attack people, so the film is still horror-like in that respect. It may be played for comedic purposes, but these creatures are anything but friendly. In other words, there is still a bit of a hard edge in here for people who want that.
Phoebe Cates and Zach Galligan reprise their roles as the cute, small-town, wholesome (despite not being married, however) couple who live together who, of course, know all about these gremlins.
It was nice to see Jackie Joseph (of the original "Little Shop Of Horrors") again as well as some other well-known characters such as Christopher Lee, Robert Prosky, Dick Miller and Keye Luke.
The film just flies by, which tells you it's entertaining.