Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Basket Case 2 (1990)

It's either loved or hated by the fans. I'd already seen Basket Case 3 so I knew what to expect since they were filmed back to back and are basically one movie cut in half. Despite having the same director and star as the original, the sequels are less bizarre and some say they were made just to make easy money.

Basket Case 2 cover from somewhere else on Earth, The American video cover for Part 2 has the same image on it as is on the original's box cover

BACKGROUND ON BASKET CASE 1: Both sequels include clips from the first Basket Case that show how disturbing it was, especially when contrasted with these more playful movies that are basically sick comedies. The first film has a smaller budget. The puppet is not always fully animated and stop motion is some of the shoddiest I've seen. None the less, the film is extremely effective and viewers are too horrified by the violence and dark mood of the movie to laugh at the poor effects. It's a violent film that does not comfort the watcher with many light spots or cute catch phrases.

THE CASE WITH BASKET CASE 2: This time there is a house full of monsters. Maybe more than ten full-sized latex characters that each have their own gimmick. One cannot take this movie seriously and they are not supposed too. The horror is not totally abandoned, there is creative gore that is more than cartoonish. It's not a kids movie just because it's funny. One scene I'd heard about is the reason I was excited to watch this movie and it is purely a comic scene. I'm talking about explicit sex between the monster Belial and a female version of himself. Yup, not for kids, well bad kids maybe. There are a lot of those out there and they are do make up a big portion of the horror market. Yes, this film is a no brainer when it comes to putting out a genre flick that will make buckets of money.

MY VERDICT: Horror and humor do mix. Everybody loves Dead Alive, Return of the Living Dead, Shaun of the Dead, etc.. I think it's just the departure from the style of the original that make people turn on this movie and others like Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, Waxwork 2: Lost in Time, and the Sleepaway Camp sequels. Alone those movies would be impossible not to like, they are still violent and offensive, but with different expectations, people can feel really burned by a movie that lacks the rawness they remember from an inspired classic. The bigger budget and humor turn a lot of purists off and my previous blog entry about 'the most hated horror sequels' helps to explain why. Movies made to collect easy money often suck for obvious reasons as it's hard not to see similarities between them and the mainstream garbage made for the masses.

Basket Case 2 is not as cool as Basket Case, but I enjoyed it quite a bit because it's not a piece of crap. It does not just try to be funny, it is funny. It does not skimp on the blood. It does not skimp on the shocks. It's different, but it does not suck.


Blogger Patrick said...

Basket case was always one of my favorite series when I was younger. It's one of the many I was introduced to by Joe Bob Brigg's drive in theater when it was on the Movie Channel.

This is one of the best examples of a horror movie's sequels becoming more and more 'horror-comedy' as they go on.

I would put the House series in the same genre

11:57 AM  
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