The Freeling family have a new house, but their troubles with supernatural forces don't seem to be over.The Freeling family have a new house, but their troubles with supernatural forces don't seem to be over.The Freeling family have a new house, but their troubles with supernatural forces don't seem to be over.
Technically, "Poltergeist II: The Other Side" is reasonably well made. But it's so lazily conceived that it's very hard to care what happens here. Making things tolerable are a still very likable bunch of actors, but they have some pretty bad material to work with this time around. A lot of the dialogue is simply abysmal. Attempts at humor largely fall flat. Director Brian Gibson is no Steven Spielberg, or Tobe Hooper, and can't generate any suspense or excitement at all. The efforts of a very talented visual effects team (supervised by Richard Edlund) can only do so much to help. It's hard to believe this was written by the same guys who wrote the first film.
This is not to say that this sequel is devoid of highlights. One pleasure is in watching the supremely creepy Julian Beck as a malevolent "reverend" who puts a human face, of sorts, on the antagonistic spirits. One ingenious moment involves Robbies' braces; the other is a sequence many people do enjoy about this sequel. That would be the "vomit creature" sequence. It turns out there are consequences for swallowing the worm at the bottle of a tequila bottle.
The family is still worth rooting for; young O'Rourke is as adorable as before. It's just too bad they're stuck in such a blah story.
H.R. Giger ("Alien", "Species") is credited with conceptual design.
Sadly, the final film for both Beck and Sampson.
Five out of 10.
- Apr 19, 2017