Review: Tremors II: Aftershocks (1996)

Directed by: SS Wilson | 100 minutes | action, comedy, science fiction, horror | Actors: Fred Ward, Christopher Gartin, Helen Shaver, Michael Gross, Marcelo Tubert, Marco Hernandez, Jose Ramon Rosario, Thomas Rosales Jr.

After the success of ‘Tremors’, a sequel could not be delayed. Under the motto of ‘never change a winning team’, the second part therefore has many similarities with the first successful part of the four-part series of ‘Tremors’ films. The creators of all four parts, SS Wilson, Ron Underwood and Brent Maddock, switch pennies in the cast. The first part ‘Tremors’ was directed by Ron Underwood. SS Wilson is in charge of ‘Tremors II: Aftershocks’. In practice, however, nothing changes. All the striking features of the first part are discussed in detail in part two. The film has the same monsters, a remote location, relatively few characters and a portion of dry humor. The translation of these concepts to the silver screen was still surprising and original in the first part,

The interplay between Fred Ward and Kevin Bacon in ‘Tremors’ is of a high level. The fun the duo has while filming is clearly reflected in their acting performances. Now Kevin Bacon is missing and Christopher Gartin has to take his place. The chemistry between Fred Ward and Christopher Gartin is less and the interaction sometimes feels forced. The presence of ‘Pistolen Paultje’ Michael Gross remains fun again. He has striking one-liners and adds the necessary humor to this horror film. While in the first part the identity of the monsters was only revealed at the end of the film, this is already known at the beginning. The moments of shock are therefore reduced to the standard situations and are therefore predictable. The tension build-up from part one is therefore completely missing. The monsters that have mutated into a new race,

The original ‘graboids’ are still portrayed in the ‘old-fashioned’ way. Considering the level of the animation, the ‘old’ monsters are head and shoulders above their animation clones. The title of the film is well chosen. It shows exactly what the viewer can expect. Just like with an earthquake, you are very shocked, but the aftershocks are less scary. The same goes for ‘Tremors’ and its successor ‘Tremors II: Aftershocks’. While the first part was still exciting and original, part two is a lot less on all fronts, but still a fun pastime.

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