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Running Time: R
Running Time: 100 minutes
Starring: Chelse Swain, Will Sanderson, with Lance Henriksen
Screenplay by: Michael
Directed by: Michael Hamilton-Wright
Retail Price: $19.98
Features: Director and Cast Filmographies, Trailer, Audio Commentary Track with Director Michael Hamilton-Wright, producer Glen Tedham and actor Philippe Bergeron, Photo Gallery, Behing the Scenes Featurette, 2 Music Videos, Outtakes
Specs: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround, English Stereo, English Subtitles, Spanish Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selection
Released: February 19th, 2002
"Escape before it rips you apart."
Pulling apart a film at the seems is not something I generally confide in doing. With any film, a major amount of work is thrown into it -- and, a lot of the time, the end result might not be exactly what the filmmaker had planned on. Somewhere between day one and the end of editing, a film will go through many unplanned changes, it's only natural. So, with that in mind, lets take "The Mangler 2" and disect the hell out of it.
Here is a film that has enough ambition behind it to be a possible great (but it's not). It's the kind of film that you just feel like the filmmakers, cast and crew all went camping one night and said, "lets make a horror film and have fun!" The only problem is, none of them had an original storyline in their head and thus, we as viewers are left to watch the same ol horror flick. In this case, it's a rampaging computer that grows a brain and kills teenage kids. Sound familiar? My brain is fried at the moment, but I know I've seen this before.
This film is right on par with the cheeseball classics, "Carnasaur" (1, 2 or 3), or any "Leprechaun" film. "Mangler 2" may not be as good as any of the "Carnasaur" films -- It may be missing the laughable gore scenes that "Carnasaur" was so damn good at -- but it tries, and ultimately succeeds as a B rate movie.
"The Mangler 2" has somewhat interesting characters, which is nice for a B-movie change, but in this case it's the (slightly) above par acting that adds to it and not the script.
The video is nice and clean. The transfer is nice and smooth. For once, it looks as if a filmmaker put some effort into making sure that their product looks pristine. It's about damn time.
"The Mangler 2" has a good color depth to it -- reds are quite lush and nearly worthy of a Zhang Yimou film (minus the hazardous technicolor processing, of course). If you're looking to learn something about mise-en-scene or techniques, however, don't look here for answers.
Well, I don't recall holding my ears at any point in the film and screaming in pain, so the sound must be decent at the least. The 5.1 digital Surround is crisp and holds everything that a 5.1 surround *should* hold.
The film's audio in general is generic at heart, but there are a few moments when the sound designer tried to come up with something original. Mostly, however, the sound effects were cheap and fake. We're constantly reminded that we're watching a "B" movie.
Thank you, GOD! Now if only MORE studios and filmmakers would care about their films enough to put this much time and effort into having an actually decent cast of supplements!!!
Here we are given the obligatory commentary with Writer/Director Michael Hamilton-Wright, Producer Glen Tedham and the zany actor Philip Pergeron (who, unfortunately, reminds me of Roberto Benigni). Cooler than the commentary, however, is the behind the scenes featurette, which shows just how tight knit this crew was -- and how much fun it (probably) was to film this bad movie. If anything, the supplements help make the movie *better,* by far.
Also, we are given a few music videos by bands we've never heard of -- as well as plenty of pictures, (a few) outtakes, and filmographies.
"The Mangler 2" is fun for a laugh or two, but ultimately it fails as a successful BAD movie. Now, if you're a more hardcore cheese nerd than me, you'll probably want to add this film to your collection -- But if you're expecting anything stunning, don't blame me when you're not stunned.