Hollywood Boulevard II

More than a sequel to the 1976 original, HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD II is an equally entertaining parody of low-budget filmmaking from veteran producer Roger Corman, who knows whereof he spoofs. Once again, the setting is Miracle Pictures, a Hollywood schlock factory whose slogan is, "If the picture's any good, it's a Miracle!" Someone has been killing off the...read more

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More than a sequel to the 1976 original, HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD II is an equally entertaining parody of low-budget filmmaking from veteran producer Roger Corman, who knows whereof he spoofs.

Once again, the setting is Miracle Pictures, a Hollywood schlock factory whose slogan is, "If the picture's any good, it's a Miracle!" Someone has been killing off the company's starlets, and studio chief Max Miranda (Steve Vinovich) is having one heck of a time replacing them. Meanwhile, who

should walk in off the street but a gorgeous young woman named Candy Chandler (Ginger Lynn Allen), who is mistaken for an extra and quickly whisked into a supporting role in Miracle's new production "Barbarian Goddesses of the Amazon." Max quickly discovers this fresh young talent and promises her

that she will be Miracle's newest star. Candy also attracts the attention of Woody O'Neill (Ken Wright), the company's head writer, who quickly strikes up a romance with her. Less impressed with this newcomer is Mary Randolph (Michelle Moffett), Miracle's reigning star, who doesn't cotton to the

idea of competition.

Meanwhile, pretentious Miracle director Zwing Zwinger (Kelly Monteith) is frustrated not only by the dwindling number of actresses available for his latest film, but by the fact that he's being forced to shoot a heavy metal video in the midst of his jungle adventure, since the band's record

company is helping foot the bill for the movie's production. A helicopter carrying four of the actresses explodes, and later, Woody and Candy are pursued through the streets by a group of soldiers. Despite it all, production continues, climaxing with Candy driving a futuristic truck for the final

action scene. While she's getting the hang of the monstrous vehicle, however, she's knocked out by the company's costume lady, Selma (Magda Harout). Always regaling the other actresses with tales of her long-lost stardom, she's actually been committing the murders, trying to reduce the pool of

available actresses to one, herself, so that she can regain her rightful place at the top of the acting heap. Woody notices that the truck is going out of control, and hops on a nearby motorcycle to save Candy. He pulls her from the vehicle just in time before it goes over a cliff with Selma

inside. Max is thrilled--not only because this means an end to the murders, but because the cameras were rolling, and he's got a spectacular closing scene for his latest film.

Like its predecessor, HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD II works in considerable stock footage from previous Corman productions; sharp-eyed viewers will recognize scenes from such potboilers as EYE OF THE EAGLE, WARLORDS OF THE 21ST CENTURY, the DEATHSTALKER movies and many more. But unlike the original, which

goofed on the presence of the borrowed sequences, this film attempts to integrate it seamlessly and does quite a good job of it. Director Steve Barnett had become familiar with the available footage while working post-production at Corman's Concorde Pictures, and has put the knowledge to good use;

those unfamiliar with the source movies might never guess that about half of this one is stolen from them.

Beyond that, HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD II provides a fun takeoff on B-movie standards, with plenty of "in" humor for knowing viewers. Among the more up-to-date potshots are the sequences with the heavy metal band, a cameo appearance by drive-in-movie critic Joe Bob Briggs, and the fact that actor Eddie

Deezen (GREASE, WARGAMES), well-known for his Jerry Lewis voice, keeps his mouth shut until the final scene. There's also a wrap party sequence in which the guests include just about everybody who's made a film for Corman in the last 10 years, including original HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD co-director Joe

Dante. There's also a brief gag about Traci Lords (CRY-BABY, SHOCK 'EM DEAD), the former underage porn star who Corman helped on her way to mainstream movies, an aside that gains extra significance given adult-film veteran Ginger Lynn Allen's presence in the lead here. She does quite a decent job

as the innocent starlet who gets a strong dose of reality while working at Miracle, and the rest of the cast is right on the movie's satiric wavelength. (Violence, nudity.)

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