by DAVID KEYES
Audiences who want to see "Species II"
Subject: The top 10 reasons why you shouldn't see
Lack Of Interesting Characters - if there's one
huge problem with "Species II," the characters are it. First
off, you have a guy named Patrick who seems like a nice
guy, and when he becomes exposed to alien chromosomes on
Mars, he turns into a sex-crazed 'Specie' that kills whatever
woman he mates with.
some of those lab members from the first "Species" movie
decide the only way to stop his wrath is to revive (or clone)
the DNA from their first experiment, once again played by
Natasha Henstridge, who is now a quiet and often sexually
isn't very interesting, when over half the movie deals with
the aliens evovling physical attraction for each other,
all to the point where the aliens evolves further into a
Misguided Story - the movie starts out with an
intriguing concept; poison a space marine with alien specimens
to create a new type of 'Specie,' but then when Earth gets
wind of this disastrous problem, they seem to think that
the only thing that could stop him is the original alien
goes downhill. What should have been a promising story set
up by a promising premise turns out to be an obsessive impulse
to impress people with dull special effects, and an urge
to experience a side of the alien life form that no one
should see. Who finds the mating habits of aliens something
great to look at? It's like a universal pornography, if
you ask me.
Depressing Visuals - Now when a movie like this
even gets the special effects wrong, something is seriously
wrong. You can tell they didn't concentrate all of their
time and effort on story and characters; if they did, with
these visual elements, they must be mentally deficient.
The visuals are just as bad as the everything else.
Well first off, most of it takes place in space, and I know
by painful experience that movies that take place in space
aren't often filmed in bright, ambitious colors. They're
filmed in murky tones, to the point where even "Lost In
Space" looks somewhat colorful.
Inept Camera Shots - like most space films, the
camera shots in "Species II" allow us to peek into certain
areas of eye-candy, and then immediately draw away to a
new situation. In other words, these visual moments are
usually cut like a theatrical preview trailer, where you
only see part of the visual and the rest is saved for the
see now that there was nothing to save for the actual movie,
and most of the effects are already shown in the trailers.
Good Writer Writes Horribly - You already know
how the writing is, but what you may not know is that the
writer, Chris Brancato, is actually very talented. Don't
believe me? Watch "Hoodlum" sometime. I imagine that most
would consider that movie now a masterpiece, to certain
it wasn't a great movie, but at least it had good things
in it. So how did this happen?
Limited And Dreary Dialogue - For a sci-fi flick,
little dialogue is used, and that which exists often associates
with situations in the movie that were, apparently, cut
out of the final product at the last moment.
to dialogue relating to cut scenes is so boring that it's
not even funny. What's the point? On top of that, did anyone
realize that the movie had dialogue in it that should have
been cut along with the scenes?
Failure To Match The Original - I must admit,
I considered to be the original "Species" movie to be one
of the best pictures of the whole sci-fi genre. So it comes,
naturally, as a surprise when the second film takes out
all the flavor and all the great things that worked so well
in the first movie.
Similarity To A Bizarre National Geographic Special
- If we really were able to peer in on other planets and
find living, breathing beings, than I imagine "Species II"
would be like a really intense National Geographic special
on the mating habits of the average outer space alien. The
only thing different is the fact that "Species II" isn't
narrated by an expert in this field. Heck, not even a sex-crazed
lunatic could possibly narrate the habits of these creatures
in "Species II," unless, of course they had experience in
sleeping with wild animals.
Horrible Acting - The acting abilities demonstrated
by these people have influenced me not to hire them if I
ever directed a movie. I'd refuse to let anyone on my set
who starred in this movie, unless they went back to school
for a couple of decades and learned some decent acting ability.
character is incredibly stiff; so stiff that the aliens
look almost intelligent, though they're slimy, repugnant-looking
creatures that resemble the inside of a Hoover carpet cleaning
Overall Concept - When you add all these things
together, how else could you save or enjoy such a clumsy
movie. It's really sad when such a great film like "Species"
is followed by one like this. They might as well have torn
up the script, tossed it in the air, and put it back together
when it fell down in different pieces to add some variety.
1998, David Keyes, Cinemaphile.org.
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