Fly II (1989)


“Babies! They’re… BABIES!” – Shredder

Fly II: C+

Man, people are too hard on this movie. Yeah it has its problems. Like, for instance, it’s a fucking horrible movie, but it has a lot going for it too.

The “director” is a badass and I will not hear otherwise. This guy Chris Walas has two questionable horror B-movies under his belt. That and an episode of Tales of the Crypt which, let’s be honest, is a show that sometimes looks like it has no director at all.

BUT (caps lock BUT!) Walas is a special effects genius. The guy did the special effects for some heavy hitters (Gremlins, Arachnophobia, and the original Fly, just to name a few) and then decided to try his hand at directing. It could have been way worse and I am absolutely not knocking him for trying something new. Good for him. The movie has a Cronenberg feel to it because the effects are all gooey and wet and fleshy, and the actors are mostly Canadian oafs. Honestly, I bet if they put Cronenberg’s name on it, the Rotten Tomatoes average would rise by 20%.   

Fly II takes place right after Fly and is basically a “Son of [Monster]” movie. The story begins with a gory birth scene in a delivery room. Except it’s not a baby being delivered; it’s Martin, Jeff Goldbulm’s fly-human offspring, born in a pulsating cocoon.

Marty looks like a regular kid, but we all know he’s full of fly DNA (because, come the fuck on of course he is). He is raised in a lab by a ruthless corporation called BARTOK. A series of workman like exchanges between scientists standing in front of ridiculous computer screens front-loads a ton of exposition about Martin’s genetic instability, accelerated growth, and manipulation at the hands of BARTOK.

Martin’s fly DNA also makes him a genius (because sure, why not?) and he uses BARTOK resources to perfect Goldblum’s teleportation device. While working in the lab late one night, his eyes beheld an eerie sight: Princess Vespa from Spaceballs, whom he promptly falls in love with. Also, his fly DNA kicks in or matures or whatever and he starts doing the same shit you saw in the first movie: getting all gross and puking and oozing all over his Canadian denim.

Martin realizes BARTOK only wants him so they can monetize his crazy fly DNA and he throws a tantrum and escapes for a while but is finally captured when he forms a cocoon to finalize his transformation. BARTOK goes full Bond villain and assigns a single squeamish doctor to monitor Martin (the hibernating super-dangerous/strong fly mutant who could wake at any moment) in a room with all the doors unlocked.

When Martin wakes up and goes on his killing spree, it’s pretty fun and you get to see many of your favorite 80’s horror archetypes get slaughtered: There’s the overzealous head of security, the heartless scientist, the evil CEO, etc. The final battle scenes are really cliche; Martin does all the old Xenomorph monster tricks like hanging on the ceiling and secreting acid, but all the carnage looks great. Martin himself looks just okay, sort of like Tokka from TMNT II if someone set him on fire and melted him a little.

We get a ton of mangled bodies, some faces/limbs melting off, varying degrees of a grotesque Fly transformation, and a head getting squashed by an elevator all designed by a talented effects virtuoso who is a little weak in the direction/story department. Watch this movie if you want to watch an effects master enjoy himself. Immortal cinema this ain’t.

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