Release: Aug 28th, 1987 Rating: PG-13 Run time: 88 min Starring: Arye Gross, Jonathan Stark Director: Ethan Wiley Official Trailer: House II: The Second Story
Watching House II: The Second Story, a sequel that has nothing to do with the first movie, House, really brings me back to my childhood. A time when I could watch a movie like this and enjoy the absurd humor, light horror and not think twice about the hokey acting and thin, plot hole filled story. Yes, House II: The Second Story has all of those problems, but screw it, I want to relive my childhood again…
Short nitty-gritty plot description from IMDb is as follows: The new owner of a sinister house gets involved with reanimated corpses and demons searching for an ancient Aztec skull with magic powers.
The Crystal Skull is a source for all mystical powers and not an alien head.
The story follows Jesse (Arye Gross), a man who inherits his deceased parents big house, a house that has a dark history. He immediately goes about messing around with all the old books and family albums and eventually starts researching about a mysterious Crystal Skull and his Great Great Grandfather and thinks the best thing to do is dig him up (yeah, digging up corpses was all the rage back in the 80s). So, he and a friend, Charlie (Jonathan Stark), starts digging and it ain’t long before Jesse meets a very much still alive Gramps (Royal Dano), who is the guardian of the powerful Crystal Skull. From there, a bunch of quirky, humorous and fun stuff happens, as all sorts of people try to get their hands on this skull, ending with an old arch nemesis of Gramps, coming back for revenge.
This guy was scary when I was little. Now? Still a little freaked out.
Fun is the best word to describe House II: The Second Story. It just reeks of fun. The acting is okay, the plot is thin, but dammit, I had tons of fun with this movie. It’s got adventure, horror, comedy and a few beautiful ladies in distress. Plus, a cameo from John Ratzenberger, as an electrician/adventurer, which comes so far out of left field, I can’t help but just take it for what it is and go along for this crazy, kick ass ride.
He’s an electrician prepared for all circumstances, be they electrical, or a hole to an alternate universe.
Fans of the first House movie (who doesn’t love that one), might be a little disappointed that the story doesn’t continue on from that one, but honestly, it didn’t bother me the least bit. Yes, they probably should’ve called this movie something else, but you can’t change the past. You take what you get and what you’re getting, is a prime example of a fun, 80s, campy horror comedy. Now, you may be wondering why I’m reviewing this movie in October, as it doesn’t seem like a Halloween themed movie, but alas, my loyal readers, the movie takes place on Oct 30th and 31st and we get a gnarly 80s Halloween party, full of wicked/cheesy costumes and a surprise appearance of Kane Hodder, dressed as a Gorilla (Kane did the stunt work on the movie).
Kane Hodder is about to get his butt whipped.
I probably should list a few negatives, but it’s so freaking hard to list anything. I mean, yeah, the acting for the most part is borderline 80s cheese and the plot like I’ve mentioned, is paper thin and full of holes. Characters come and go, never to be seen again and the ending seems to leave things hopeless for the main characters, even if they think everything will be fine and dandy (why leave the skull there?!?). These few nitpicks will take the score down, as this movie definitely isn’t perfect, but screw it, I ain’t bringing the score down a lot (sue me, it’s my site).
A full table, full of dead Gramps, a hot woman and strange creatures.
Verdict: A fun filled horror comedy, that has nothing to do with the first movie, but has everything to do, with giving the viewer a childhood flashback, filled with decaying Grandfathers, cute monsters, hot women and an undead Cowboy out for revenge. What more can you ask for?