Saturday, December 12, 2009

Blockbuster Trash: Mimic 2

I know some of you may think of this as a cheat, but it's not. While it's true that this is a Forgotten Sequel (it was made in 2001), it was also made direct-to-video. Unlike the last two films featured in the series, this movie was never in a theater! For those that don't know, Guillermo Del Toro was so fed up with the Weinstein's constant creative insertion that he all but disowned the original Mimic. As such, it should be no surprise that he did not make this movie. Instead, he made some small, indy film called Blade II. There is some confusion to this film if you really look at it, as well. The story is a sequel, but centers around one of the supporting characters and not the lead. Does it make this film a 'Sidequel' then? Regardless, this is...
The film begins with a mysterious man walking down a, I mean street with a mysterious briefcase. He is attacked by an unseen creature with claws and stumbles into the path of a taxi cab. That is also attacked as well, complete with having the metal hood cut through. Of course, because this is not a good movie, the hood is in one-piece when the police show up the next morning. Their only clue is a bunch of dirt that seems to have come out of the briefcase. The movie transitions to our real lead: a young woman who is a Biology teacher at an inner city high shool. Just to note: because this movie was made in early 2001 and set in New York, you do get a sadly-ironic shot of the Twin Towers. Our heroine proves to be very quirky and has one obsession: bugs. I mean, she is really into bugs. We learn this in great detail as she goes out on a date with some guy. In one of the movie's few comedy segments, she talks non-stop about bug behavior, while the guy only wants to get in her pants. After she leaves, he is attacked by a mysterious man in a coat. Cue to police!
The more we learn about our heroine, the weirder she gets. After she is informed about the man's death, she takes a picture of herself. Why, you ask? Because she apparently does that every time a relationship turns bad. To make it all the stranger, she posts them all on a closet door in her apartment! The detective talks to her in-depth and even puts the moves on her a bit. He suspects that something was up with her due to people in her proximity meeting mysterious and violent deaths. He states early on, however, that she could not do it, since the man was strung up on a light pole and outweighed her by nearly 100 lbs. In the film's other parallel story, she develops a close bond with a young, inner city youth, while an older student has the hots for her. Late one evening, she discovers that her and the younger boy are trapped in the school, thanks to someone stacking up desks and chairs Poltergeist-style. The Principal, played by penultimate character actor John Polito, tries to help, but meets a bloody death. This is also where we learn that the killer is one of the original beasts from the first film. I admire your attempt at mystery, but is this really a surprise? This is Mimic 2!
The bulk of the movie revolves around our heroes running somewhere, talking about bugs and running some more. Since our heroine was one of the people from the original release of the bugs in the last movie, she knows all about how their minds/bodies work. Of course, nearly every time she sets something up based on that knowledge, it fails! She switches clothes with the older boy (who's probably 19 in real life) to fool the bug, but only ends up making it confused and angry. You see, the bug has apparently decided that she is to be his mate...for some reason, so it is killing any man in her life that is conceived to be a 'rival.' Speaking of the bug, it is mostly CG and looks good or terrible depending on the scene. In its 'human form,' it never looks realistic, unless you think that people resememble Michael Meyers covered in Vasoline. After a lot of running and struggling, the policeman from earlier breaks into the building- which is surrounded by cops- and saves our heroine...or so it seems. In the chaos, the police somehow confuse the bug in his form for the real guy, who they discover. Rather than giving us a twist ending, the movie continues and has the bug get decapitated by our heroine. She is forced to wait out its death, however, as it died in the doorway. The End.
Yeah, this movie is not good. The story is not all that awful, but it definitely has some flaws. The mystery about the assailant is handled well, but feels really unnecessary. If this were the first Mimic or an original IP, it would be logical. In addition, the whole thing with the bug being in love/lust with her does not make all that much sense. She makes a point many times about it still behaving like a bug and having its flaws (i.e. flash sensitivity). So, this creature is exactly like a bug, only it is also just like a human? Early on, they give us many victims that are really unnecessary. Why did the bug kill the janitor? Did it push the story on in anyway? Was it just so your film did not feel so bottom-heavy? On top of that, the ending felt like they had a neat idea, but 'chickened out' on it. I will give them credit for some good bug effects, but deduct just about as many points for an over-reliance on CG. This is especially notable when you consider that this is a sequel to a Del Toro film, the man who still pushes for on-camera effects/suits. You can definitely do worse (see Species II-IV), but don't expect a lot.
Next up, a quirkly little film involving aliens, swimsuit models and Frankenstein's creation. You have to be curious. Stay tuned...

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