A sodden, tedious sequel, THE HIDDEN II dispenses with all the qualities that made the 1987 original entertaining in favor of endless talk and pointless "action."
The alien creature that was seemingly destroyed at the end of the previous film takes over a dog, finds its way to a deserted factory, and spawns a group of pods. Fifteen years later, Stanton (Jovin Montanaro), one of a group of people planning a "rave" dance in the factory, is possessed by a
creature and goes on a killing spree. Detective Beck (Michael Weldon), who once assisted an alien agent in fighting the alien criminal and was imbued with the life force of the good alien, appears at the factory and is attacked by Stanton; both die in the ensuing fight. Beck's daughter, Juliet
(Kate Hodge), is approached by another alien, MacLachlan (Raphael Sbarge), who explains what happened to her father and tells her he is here to destroy the evil extraterrestrials before they can spawn further.
The pair track the creatures to the rave dance, where one possesses two different people and escapes, ultimately taking over the body of a bum (Tony Di Benedetto). After destroying the remaining alien pods and creatures, MacLachlan and Juliet return to her apartment, where they wind up having
sex. The bum wreaks further murderous havoc before the alien switches to yet another body and confronts MacLachlan and Juliet back at the factory. MacLachlan manages to destroy the last creatures, but must ultimately return to his home planet, leaving Juliet behind.
"I want to call it 'Bad to the Max'," says one of the rave planners early in the movie, in a phrase that proves prophetic. Since the film begins with a lengthy computer scroll explaining the events of the original, and then proceeds into seven minutes of "flashback" footage from its climax, it's
immediately clear that inspiration was sadly lacking in this routine sequel. Under writer-director Seth Pinsker, the rest of the movie plods, with so much time devoted to conversations between MacLachlan and Juliet that it comes to resemble a filmed play.
Those scenes from the first film only point up how much more wit and energy (and budget) it had than this sorry follow-up. Pinsker's infrequent action scenes are slack, there's no attempt to contrive a futuristic ambience, even though the film presumably takes place in 2002, and the original's
sardonic humor is replaced with dumb in-jokes: Sbarge's alien character is named after actor Kyle MacLachlan, who played the first film's heroic alien, and when he and Juliet have their (fully clothed) sex scene, the music apes RISKY BUSINESS, Sbarge's most significant previous credit. The script
is so inconsistent that MacLachlan, seen using chopsticks easily in one scene, is made to be confused by a toothbrush in the next. Todd Masters's alien effects, though briefly seen, are pretty well-executed, but that's the only creditable element; the illegal dance is the only rave with which
HIDDEN II is likely to be associated. (Graphic violence, sexual situations, extreme profanity.)
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- Released: 1994
- Rating: R
- Review: A sodden, tedious sequel, THE HIDDEN II dispenses with all the qualities that made the 1987 original entertaining in favor of endless talk and pointless "action." The alien creature that was seemingly destroyed at the end of the previous film takes over… (more)