He Bugged Me

Eric Stoltz in The Fly II (1989)

When Martin was born he was immediately special and not just because his mum sadly died during child birth making him an orphan. Nope the reason Martin is special is because he is the son of Seth Brundle, the man who built a tele-transportation device, but how it works died with him. Of course Seth died having had his genes spliced with those of a fly and those genes have been passed on to Martin who as such at the age of just 5 is a fully grown man. But Anton Bartok, who Seth worked for, has raised Martin in the hope to not only tap in to his mutated genes but also in the hope the super bright Martin will be able to unlock the secrets of the transportation devices. When Martin with the help of girlfriend Beth realises Bartok can't be trusted and he needs to find a cure as he starts transforming in to a fly like his father did they go on the run.

Like a fly fighting sticky paper hanging from the ceiling "The Fly II" was always fighting a losing battle as there was no way they could live up to let alone surpass the comically disgusting nature of "The Fly" and the brilliance of Jeff Goldblum as Brundlefly. But for a movie which was never going to thrill audiences to the same extent "The Fly II" is by no means the stinker it could have been and whilst inferior is surprisingly watchable.

Daphne Zuniga in The Fly II (1989)

But beyond the comparisons "The Fly II" has an issue, a huge, smack in your face issue which is the fact it is far too obvious. The minute the story gives Martin a girlfriend you know what will happen; together they will go on the run from Bartok industries to try and find a cure before he evolves into a fly like his father did and before Bartok and his scientists get to experiment on him. It is a shame that the writers couldn't have found a way to make it less obvious because after a while it becomes a case that you are not watching for what is going to happen but to see how decent the special effects and horror is which I will say is combined okay but nothing special.

Nothing special is how I would describe the performance from Eric Stoltz as whilst he brings his own character and intensity to the role of Martin he of course was fighting that losing battle because of the comparisons to Jeff Goldblum despite them being different characters. The thing is that Stoltz is a likeable actor and Daphne Zuniga is a likeable actress but there is no real power to their performances making them weak whilst those around them seem to be overplaying things.

What this all boils down to is that "The Fly II" is unsurprisingly inferior to "The Fly" but it would have had to have been a miracle to not end up inferior. But it is not totally terrible and whilst far too obvious is still surprisingly entertaining.

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