11/19/2017  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Jennifer Esposito Is Your Newest NCIS Agent in Season 1...
Critics Are Split on Ghostbusters Reboot ...
'Respect is key': The Game, Snoop Dogg lead march to LA...
Kristen Stewart's Sheer Dress At 'Equals' Premiere -- S...
"A Slow Slipping Away"-- Kris Kristofferson's Long-Undi...
Fox News' Roger Ailes Sued for Sexual Harassment by Ous...
Garrison Keillor Retires from 'Prairie Home Companion' ...
Jennifer Aniston is Pregnant: Star Steps Out in Loose D...
Hiddleswift Is One Big Song Promotion -- A Theory...
Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie Presley files for ...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Columbia TriStar Home Video presents
Piranha II: The Spawning (1981)

Anne: It wasn't a shark, and it wasn't a barracuda, and it wasn't a moray eel, and it wasn't a jealous lover.
Steve: Then what was it?
Anne: I don't know! That's the point.

- Tricia O'Neil, Lance Henriksen

Review By: Rich Rosell   
Published: January 29, 2003

Stars: Tricia O'Neil, Steve Marachuk, Lance Henriksen
Other Stars: Ricky G. Paull, Ted Richert, Leslie Graves
Director: James Cameron

MPAA Rating: R for (gore, nudity)
Run Time: 01h:34m:32s
Release Date: January 28, 2003
UPC: 043396103757
Genre: horror


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
D DC-C- D+

DVD Review

Here's a curious piece of forgettable 1981 crud that only merits a historical mention as being Titanic-sized director James Cameron's Italian-funded second film. The fact that it is a sequel to the arguably better 1978 Joe Dante film is pointless, and instead with Piranha 2: The Spawning we get to look back in time and giggle at yet another of the ineptly bad nature-against-man flicks that were so prevalent in the late 1970s and early 1980s, all the while knowing it was made by a guy who would one day be king of the world, so to speak. This was the film he made just a few years before he made a name for himself with The Terminator, and after that the floodgates opened with a string of big Cameron-directed Hollywood spectacles (The Abyss, Aliens, Terminator 2, True Lies and that one about the boat that sinks).

Piranha 2: The Spawning doesn't require any extensive knowledge of the Dante film, as there is enough handy exposition to explain the hows and whys. At Club Elysium, a posh resort somewhere in the Caribbean, a batch of gene-spliced piranhas, actually some kind of lab-designed "super fish" that can live in all types of environments, are ravenously feeding on tourists. That's pretty much the plot it in a nutshell, and most of the film is spent showing an array of stock characters getting gnawed on by hungry, winged fish. Oh yeah, they can fly, too.

Tricia O'Neil is Anne, a diving instructor at Club Elysium who finds herself heading up the search for what is killing her clients, and occasionally trading barbs with her estranged policeman husband Steve (a really young-looking Lance Henriksen, here dressed like a disheveled busboy). Anne starts wooing a visiting tourist named Tyler Sherman (Steve Marachuk), only to eventually find out that he is harboring a rather deep, dark secret concerning the toothy flesh-eaters.

Special effects are anything but special, with the piranhas being not much more than laughably bad rubber puppets on strings. There is, however, a great campy moment when a large school of them leap out of the surf to attack a huge party on the beach, and Cameron gets to supply some decent B-movie bloodletting and flesh-chewing. If you've seen one nature-gone-amuck film, you've seen 'em all, and there isn't really anything new in this one to make it any different from any of a 1000 other similarly lame outings. With Piranha 2: The Spawning, there is the requisite blood, nudity and bad, bad special effects, but no sense of serviceable tension or fear.

I'm a big fan of trashy B-grade horror films, but this one is a tough sell, even for me. Cameron's name doesn't magically turn this into anything closely resembling a good film, and the hokey piranha effects look incredibly dated and ineffectual. It's not bad enough to even elicit more than a few unintentional laughs, and it is not even remotely scary. It's just awful.

Rating for Style: D
Rating for Substance: D

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Rationo
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Well, the opening and closing credits are presented in widescreen, but that's about it; the rest of Piranha 2: The Spawning is in a badly cropped 1.33:1 full-screen transfer that has such poor image detail that I felt as if I were watching it through two semi-opaque fish scales. Most of this careless, apparent rush job is full of orange-ish fleshtones and ugly, muted early 1980s colors. The print itself is hardly pristine, with plenty of small blemishes to be found. Grain is evident more often than not, rendering the already poor image quality that much worse. Forget about deciphering the night scenes, those are a confusing, murky mess (and based on what I saw of the creature effects, I'm guessing we're not really missing that much).

Image Transfer Grade: C-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglishno


Audio Transfer Review: The English mono track (the only option to be found here) is a typically flat affair, mangling most of the dialogue into a shrill mess. Voices often sound just plain odd, and at times it appeared like the entire film had been hastily redubbed. It is fairly obvious that neither the image or audio transfers for Piranha 2: The Spawning were put through any special restoration process.

Audio Transfer Grade: C-

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 28 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese with remote access
3 Other Trailer(s) featuring Anaconda, Creature Features, The Forsaken
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: An odd trio of trailers (Anaconda, Creature Features, The Forsaken) is the only content in the supplements column. The good news is that without any extras, I could get this future beer coaster out of my player that much sooner.

The disc is cut into 28 chapters, and features a wealth of subtitles in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Chinese.

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

Flying piranhas are eating people in the Caribbean, and only a diving instructor can save them. This tired sequel to Joe Dante's 1978 original may have been directed by James Cameron, but that doesn't make it good.

If the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences sees this one, they just might ask for Cameron's Oscar® back.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, jennifer esposito, blue bloods, ncis, mark harmon. duane henry, wilmer valderrama, michael weatherly, bull, movie, ghostbusters, comedy, chris helmsworth, melissa mcarthy, kristen wiig, celebrity, rap, game, shoop dogg, jayceon terrell taylor, alton sterling, kristen stewart, equals, jonathan simkhal, nicholas hoult, music, kris kristofferson, country music hall of fame, alzheimers, lyme disease, fox news, gretchen carlson, fox and friends, steve doocy, roger ailes, the real story with gretchen carlson, radio, garrison keillor, a prairie home companion, jennifer anniston, baby bump, justin theroux, taylor swift, tom hiddleston, calvin harris, lisa marie presley, michael lockwood, riley and benjamin keough, danny keough, michael jackson, nicolas cage, tom affleck, boston fan, bill simmons, hbo show, any given wednesday, tom brady, deflategate, hamilton, lin-manuel mianda, periscope, heart tweet machine, hamilton mixtape, cable, hbo, curb your enthusiasm, larry david, bernie sanders, saturday night live, maya and marty, christina grimmie, murdered, plaza live, before you exit, marcus grimmie, nashville, cmt, president brian phillips, the tonight show, jimmy fallon, president obama, the roots, hillary clinton, tim mcgraw, faith hill, maggie mcgraw, humble and kind, ellen degeneres show, titi pierce, coldwell banker robbins & free realty, hairspray live!, tracy turnblad, york theatre company, john waters, jennifer hudson, harvey fierstein, martin short, derek hough, j.k. rowling, harry potter and the cursed child, noma dumezweni, emma watson, judd apatow, paul freig, melissa mccarthy, romance, history channel, roots, remake, anika noni rose, t.i., malachi kirby, josh duhamel, transformers, fergie, black eyed peas, axl, double dutchess, abc, music city, grand ole opry, chip esten, lennon stella, the voice, alisan porterm, christina aguilera, ceelo green, ariana grande, sia, the little big town, 2016 billboard music awards, pink, just like fire, pamela neal, warrior princess, send my love (to your new lover), billboard music awards, adele, patrick daughters, bryan cranston, lbj, all the way, melissa leo, frank langella, todd weeks, hard sell, kristin chenoweth, wicked

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store