When an army of Graboids - giant, carnivorous underground worms - threaten the Petromaya oil refinery in Mexico, its owners call on Earl Bassett, who once helped kill four of the creatures ... See full summary »
A batch of unhatched critter eggs are mistaken for Easter eggs by the country-folk inhabitants of Grover's Bend and, before long, the ferocious furballs are on the rampage again. Written by
Ross Horsley <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The first Critters (1986) movie was one of the best in an abundance of Gremlins rip-off's to come out following the release of Joe Dante's classic in 1984. It was amusing, entertaining, satisfyingly bloody and whizzed by in a fast-paced 90 minute running time. The titular Critters or, to give them their proper name, Crites, were also a memorable creation - tiny balls of fur with nasty teeth and the ability to shoot poisoned darts from their back. They are cuddly enough to be oddly cute but with a face only a mother could love. The surprisingly modest box-office takings established Critters as a franchise, and the sequel arrived just two years later.
Unsurprisingly, Critters 2 is little more than a re-hash of the first movie, with the terrorising creatures attacking the same town again and coming up against their arch-nemesis Brad (Scott Grimes), who apparently had his ear pieced and grew a mullet between films. Brad's celebrity status in the town catches the eye of the slight- older Megan (Liane Curtis), but Brad just wants his friend Charlie (Don Keith Opper) back. Still teamed up with bounty hunter Ug (Terrence Mann) somewhere in space, Charlie's spaceship detects Crite activity back on Earth, and so they return to destroy them. Soon enough, the Crites have bred beyond count and are munching on everything in sight.
The biggest disappointment with Critters 2 is the sheer lack of imagination. The first movie had enough wit and self-awareness to create something bolder, the like of which was done in Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990) and its bat-s**t crazy, anything-goes climax. The creatures too, are easily propped behind a variety of counters so their puppeteers can operate them with ease, while the first movie at least demonstrated some creative puppet work. The humour is goofier and more obvious, and the climactic set-piece involving a giant ball of combined critters attacking a garage packed with fast- food, just fails to hit the mark. It's certainly an easy watch, but there's little here to excite.
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