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Linh Dan Pham,
Two reporters, Tracy and Chuck, get a message from a third one who discovered something about "Futureworld" and becomes killed before he could tell anyone about it. They visit Futureworld to find out what he knew. Written by
Wolfgang Klimt <email@example.com>
A fairly uninteresting sequel with a very poor first half and a second half that is badly delivered
Years after the failure of Westworld, the same company have regrouped and are planning to open the same theme park again but improved and totally safe. Chuck Browning, the journalist who originally broke the Westworld story, is approached by a mysterious man who has information on this new park but he is killed before he can tell his story. Looking for dirt under the surface, Browning and colleague Ballard join the elite group selected for the opening few days at the park and begin to investigate a world where nothing is what it seems nothing.
Having enjoyed the Jurassic Park rehearsal that was Westworld, I tuned in to this sequel hoping for, at very least, more of same stuff with a clever new slant on it. In defence of the film it does try to do something with the plot and widens it out into a bigger, potentially better conspiracy story but for some reason it fails to really engage. The first half of the film drags like a chain smoker and it seems happy to just bang out sequences that we are supposed to go 'wow' at simply because they involve special effects or robots. This is a terrible first hour because the special effects at best are superimposed men painted red and green to look like holographic chess pieces and, at worst a laughable moment where people sky down the red dust on Mars on rather, they ski down a normal mountain but the whole scene is shot through a red filter! That is not a special effect and even in 1976 I doubt that these 'effects' were enough to stop audiences from getting bored in the first half of the movie.
The second half is a marked improvement but, by then, a lot of damage had been done and a flurry of action and conspiracy was not quite enough to make it a good film. It does have some good scenes but, ironically enough, these feature between the duplicated characters rather than being the effect shots that the producers were clearly banking on being the business side of the film. However, the extent of the threat is never translated to the film and the ending is terrible far too muted to have even the faintest relation to the plot we were being sold just a few minutes before. The film only once or twice has even vague tension and certainly nowhere near the degree that the plot demanded.
The cast are also hamstrung by the material. Fonda looks bemused the whole time and it looks likely that nobody told him what was happening in the film he certainly doesn't look like a man who has just uncovered an evil conspiracy! Danner is also as shapeless and dipsy and she didn't make me care one bit about her. The support cast try hard to look 'evil' and 'conspiratorial' but really they are not given the tools to do the job and just end up scowling! A cameo from Yul Brynner just seems to be totally pointless and resulting in his entire scene just being stupid.
Overall this is a very poor sequel. It tries to repeat the formula from the first film while opening it out into its own plot but it fails in a big way.
The first hour is empty, unspectacular that was meant to be spectacle but wasn't and a second half that has a potentially good plot which is just wasted by a delivery that is so lacking in excitement and tension that you'd think there was no conspiracy or danger whatsoever! Stick to the original.
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