Poltergeist 2 : The Other Side title

Tag Line : They're back

Poltergeist 2 : The Other SidePicking up over a year after the events of part 1, Steve and Dianne Freeling, and their two youngest children, (playef by the original cast members) have been staying with Dianne's mother (Geraldine Fitzgerald), who the kids refer to as Grandma Jess.

Steve is now working as a vacuum cleaner salesman, they're broke, as the insurance company don't believe that their house got sucked into another dimension, and therefore are unable to afford a place of their own and what is worse, Steve won't let them buy a TV set (not surprisingly).

So far they have been free from any more unwanted spiritual visitors, but after Dianne's mother dies the problems begin. Carol-Anne starts receiving calls on her toy telephone from strange ghostly voices, strange vortex's materialise in the kids bedroom, then they get plagued by some ghostly old priest (played by Julian Beck) who, for some strange reason, has a bizarre fascination with their youngest daughter (ooooooeeeeeerrrrrrrrr!).

Fortunately, help is at hand. An old Indian named Taylor (Will Samson) shows up, who specialises in fighting these kinds of evil spirits, along with Tangina Barrons from part 1 (Zelda Rubenstein again), who believes that the appearance of the ghostly priest has something to do with the discovery of an old tomb underneath the old cemetery that their old house was built on (and you thought that the Jehovah's Witnesses where a pain in the arse).

Mayhem soon erupts, as the evil spirits try to take Carol Anne again and the whole family ends up trying to battle the evil forces on their own turf. As far as sequels go this is ok, but there's nothing really to recommend it unless of course you really enjoyed the first film and wanted to collect the entire set of videos.

Be warned, The scene with the giant tequila worm is so ridiculous it makes you want to cringe and the part where Bobby's braces suddenly sprout extra wires and encompass the whole family is not much better.

Overall Marks : 4/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Virtually the whole original cast returned for this sequel, except of course for actress Dominique Dunne who was sadly killed by her boyfriend in 1982. Understandably, her character of the Freeling's teenage daughter Dana was absent from the film, but strangely no mention was made of her, as if she had never appeared in the first film at all.

  • Director Brian Gibson also directed the 1998 British comedy film "Still Crazy".

  • The films budget was $19,000,000.

  • There was an apocryphal story surrounding the production that several of the decayed corpses on set were in fact real skeletons, and that several crew members demanded an exorcism to be held. Will Sampson, who plays Taylor, happened to be a real life 'Shamen' and so reportedly offered to perform it in order to quieten the crew down.

  • Julian Beck who played Kane, the ghostly preacher from the 1800's, died of stomach cancer in 1985 part-way through filming the movie. Rock band Anthrax used his character's likeness from the film, on the front cover of their 1987 "Among the Living" album.

  • Will Sampson, who plays the Red Indian character Taylor, was the inmate in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" who escaped at the end. Graig Nelson's line about "he looks like he just escaped from an asylum" was an in-joke. He also appeared in "Orca The Killer Whale" and "Firewalker" He unfortunately died in hospital in 1987 following complications during a heart operation.

  • There is a scene where Tangina Baron's shows the family an old photo of the ghostly preacher and his cult followers from the early 1800's. However, this would be impossible as photography hadn't been invented then.

  • Alien designer H.R. Giger did some of the conceptual artwork for this film, most of which can be seen during the films climax.

  • Irrespective of whether or not you liked this film, there is no disputing its popularity. To date it has grossed in excess of $41million in the USA alone.

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