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Mary Lambert
Edward Furlong, Anthony Edwards, Clancy Brown
Writing Credits:
Richard Outten

A teenage boy and his father move to his recently-deceased mother's hometown, where they encounter an ancient Native American cemetery with the power to raise the dead.

Box Office:
$17 million.
Opening Weekend
$4,825,100 on 1852 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 100 min.
Price: $29.98
Release Date: 2/25/2020

• Audio Commentary with Director Mary Lambert
• Interview with Actor Edward Furlong
• Interview with Actor Clancy Brown
• Interview with Actor Jason McGuire
• Interview with Special Effects Artist Steve Johnson
• Interview with Composer Mark Governor
• Trailer


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Pet Sematary Two: Collector's Edition [Blu-Ray] (1992)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (February 5, 2020)

Though 1989’s Pet Sematary didn’t rake in the big bucks, it did well for a low-budget horror flick. This led to the semi-inevitable sequel, 1992’s Pet Sematary Two.

Actor Renee Hallow (Darlanne Fluegel) dies in a bizarre accident on the movie set. Her ex-husband Chase Matthews (Anthony Edwards) decides to move from LA to Renee’s Maine hometown, and he brings their teen son Jeff (Edward Furlong) with them.

Jeff makes a friend via Drew Gilbert (Jason McGuire), a teen who suffers abuse at the hands of his cruel stepfather Gus (Clancy Brown). This torment escalates when Gus shoots and kills Drew’s beloved dog Zowie.

Drew knows of an old piece of Native land that supposedly resurrects the dead. What could go wrong?

As anyone who saw the original film – or its 2019 remake - knows, plenty can and will go awry. Unlike those movies, though, Two doesn’t come from a Stephen King text.

While the 1989 and 2019 flicks were based on King’s 1983 novel, Two exists as its own entity. Of course, it borrows the same themes and concepts, but King wasn’t involved in the project at all.

For Two, we do find the return of director Mary Lambert, but I don’t know if that counts as a good thing. Lambert seemed unable to do much with the 1989 movie, so it felt more like a tepid TV movie than a big-screen scarefest.

Does Lambert offer anything better from Two? Nope, as this turns into an ineffective horror tale.

I’ll give those behind Two credit for the choice to make it different than the first flick – somewhat, at least. Both share more than a few common features, but a lot of sequels essentially just remake their predecessors, so I appreciate that Two finds some modest new paths.

Unlike the first movie, though, Two comes with only the loosest of plots. Basically it flits from one character domain to another without much clarity, one of many factors that make it unsatisfying.

A few of these tangents actually threaten to become interesting, mainly when one dead character comes back as a more appealing version of himself – well, sort of. I can’t say more if I want to avoid spoilers, but the film flirts with the notion that the resurrection process turns the character into a better person.

Because it needs to embrace horror, the film doesn’t spend much time with this notion, though, so don’t expect it to add up to anything significant. Like the rest of the movie, this theme comes and goes without much commitment.

Would it have killed the screenwriter to come up with one coherent plot and stick with it? Instead, Two brings us a bunch of story fragments, like someone planned a Pet Sematary anthology series and shoved together bits and pieces that would’ve fit in there.

Like most horror tales, Two requires the characters to behave in a slew of stupid ways, but this one goes a bit farther than most. For instance, at one point Jeff fails to notice that Drew’s covered in blood. Wouldn’t the kid comment on this?

Given its major weaknesses, I don’t think Two fares worse than the first film, and the presence of a superior cast helps. Furlong never turned into a particularly good actor, but the movie doesn’t ask much of him, so he doesn’t harm it.

In addition, Edwards and Brown add some talent to the proceedings. In particular, Brown does pretty well as the sadistic Sheriff Gilbert, as he brings dark energy to the part.

And as I mentioned, I appreciate that Two takes on story threads that allow it to differ from the first one. Unfortunately, the end product becomes so fragmented and scattered that it doesn’t turn into a memorable effort.

Footnote: the Blu-ray’s art calls it Pet Sematary Two, so I went with that. However, the actual credits refer to it as Pet Sematary II. I have no clue why they differ.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B/ Bonus B+

Pet Sematary Two appears in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was a pretty strong presentation.

For the most part, sharpness seemed positive. A few shots looked a bit soft, but those were exceptions to the rule, so the majority of the elements came across as concise and well-defined.

Jaggies and moiré effects failed to materialize, and I noticed no edge haloes. With a nice, natural layer of grain, heavy-handed digital noise reduction didn’t appear to occur, and the image lacked spots, marks or other print defects.

In terms of colors, the film opted for a subdued palette, one that tended to favor an amber flavor to suit the fall New England setting. Some blues popped up in nighttime or dream sequences as well. Overall color reproduction remained fine, so despite the mildly muted sensibility, the hues remained acceptably full and vivid.

Blacks showed nice depth and intensity, and I thought low-light shots appeared clear and well-depicted. Overall, I felt pleased with this quality transfer.

I also thought we got a good DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack from Two. Given the story, the soundscape usually offered creepy atmosphere more than anything else, but it occasionally kicked to life in more significant ways.

These related to the sporadic scenes of violence or terror, as those opened up the mix to provide reasonable spread and engagement. Music also offered appealing spread and delineation.

Still, this remained a largely environmental mix, so don’t expect a lot of fireworks. It created a nice sense of place, at least.

Audio quality seemed more than adequate. Speech appeared natural and concise, without edginess or other issues.

Music felt rich and full, while effects demonstrated solid clarity and accuracy. While this never turned into a whiz-bang soundtrack, it felt perfectly fine for the story.

As we move to extras, we launch with an audio commentary from director Mary Lambert. Along with disc producer Justin Beahm, she offers a running, screen-specific look at the project’s development, story/characters, cast and performances, sets and locations, photography, effects, music and related domains.

Though Lambert and Beahm occasionally refer to the movie as it goes, most of this track progresses much more like an interview than a standard screen-specific commentary. In that regard, it does reasonably well for itself, as we get a good array of insights into the production.

That said, the commentary can drag at times, and we get a few too many gaps. While a good track, it seems a little too erratic.

By the way, I felt bad for actor Jared Rushton as I listened. Both Lambert and Beahm continually called him a “local hire”, with an implication that he lacked experience. I guess neither of them ever saw Big!

In addition to the film’s trailer, the disc comes with five interviews, and the first presents actor Edward Furlong. In this 13-minute, 32-second reel, Furlong discusses how he got into T2 and became an actor.

Furlong also tells us about his experiences during the Sematary Two shoot. This never becomes the most coherent overview, but Furlong manages a few good memories.

Next comes actor Clancy Brown, as he gives us a 21-minute chat about his career in general as well as his work on Sematary Two. Nothing especially insightful emerges, but Brown adds some interesting notes.

Actor Jason McGuire brings a 24-minute, 23-second talk about his life and aspects of his short time in movies. Given that McGuire made only three films – he also appeared in 1993’s Leap of Faith and 1994’s Forrest Gump - 24 minutes seem like an awfully long chat, but he gives us some worthwhile thoughts.

Up next, we find a 15-minute, 51-second interview with special effects artist Steve Johnson. He goes over his career and his work on Sematary Two.

I loved Johnson’s recent commentary for Big Trouble in Little China, so I looked forward to this interview. Though Johnson doesn’t show the same gleeful willingness to dish dirt here, he still brings a fun chat.

Finally, we get composer Mark Governor via a 29-minute, 32-second piece. He looks at his interest in music along with his efforts for Sematary Two. Governor offers another enjoyable interview.

Because it manages its own story beats and doesn’t just rework the original film, Pet Sematary Two comes with some positives. However, a poorly-executed script and lack of purpose make it less than effective. The Blu-ray comes with pretty positive picture and audio as well as a good collection of bonus features. Two isn’t worse than the first flick, but don’t take that as a recommendation.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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