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(1998) (Natasha Henstridge, Michael Madsen) (R)

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Sci-Fi/Horror: A cloned half alien, half human being is used to find an astronaut, infected with an alien virus, who's impregnating women with fast-growing embryos.
After successfully landing on Mars, astronauts Patrick Ross (JUSTIN LAZARD), Dennis Gamble (MYKELTI WILLIAMSON), and Ann Sampas (MYRIAM CYR) return to Earth. Unbeknownst to them, they've been infected with alien DNA. Although they are supposed to be sexually quarantined for ten days, Patrick begins having sex -- with deadly results. Sprouting alien tentacles, Patrick impregnates many women who, only moments later, die after giving eruptive birth to toddler-sized children.

Meanwhile, in a scientific lab, Dr. Laura Baker (MARG HELGENBERGER) is conducting experiments on Eve (NATASHA HENSTRIDGE), a half alien, half human being who has been cloned from Sil, another half-breed creature from the first film. While that earlier being turned deadly when her mating instincts arose, Baker has subdued them in Eve. She is concerned, however, when she discovers that Eve is reacting to telepathic signals from another creature that turns out to be Patrick.

While Patrick's father, Senator Ross (JAMES CROMWELL), is lauding his son's previous scientific efforts, Colonel Carter Burgess Jr (GEORGE DZUNDZA) is suspicious of Patrick's extraterrestrial activity. Thus, he hires Press Lennox (MICHAEL MADSEN), a covert assassin previously used to hunt down Eve's earlier incarnation, and they set out to find the wayward astronaut. At the same time, Baker jump starts Eve's alien side to help them track down Patrick. As Eve's mating instincts grow, Baker and the others worry what might happen should she and Patrick mate.

If they liked the original film or are fans of sci-fi/horror flicks, they just might.
For strong sexuality, sci-fi violence/gore and language.
  • NATASHA HENSTRIDGE plays a half human, half alien creature who isn't given much to do other than be docile in the first half and then go "into heat" in the second.
  • MICHAEL MADSEN plays an assassin hired to kill the aliens.
  • JUSTIN LAZARD plays an astronaut who unknowingly becomes infected with alien DNA. Soon he has sex with many different women as the alien instincts drive him to mate and produce offspring.
  • MARG HELGENBERGER plays a caring and devoted scientist/researcher who wants to help Eve.
  • MYKELTI WILLIAMSON plays an astronaut who teams up with Lennox to find his fellow astronaut who's now an alien.


    OUR TAKE: 1 out of 10
    "Species II," the follow up sequel to the moderately surprising hit original from 1995, is so much of a pure "B" movie that it might just need to be included in the definition of that term. Featuring bad and uninspired acting, gratuitous sex, plenty of hokey sci-fi effects and enough blood and gore for several films, this is a picture that could easily have gone straight to video or cable without taking up space in the local multiplex. While it may open with a reasonable box office return, don't expect it to last long in the theaters.

    Essentially dumbing down the original story (that at least started with an okay premise), cover girl Natasha Henstridge is cloned back into existence as Eve, the half human, half alien counterpart to the original character, Sil. This time, however, she's locked up like a lab rat and quarantined from contact with men lest she get that lethal mating urge once again.

    Instead, the filmmakers give that instinct to an astronaut/national hero who has returned from Mars infected with the same DNA that created Sil & Eve. After that basic setup, the film dallies a bit with a brief psychic connection between the astronaut and Eve and then proceeds into a boring, repetitious volley of violent sexual encounters that, of course, eventually ends with the possibility of yet another sequel in the series. Let's hope that's not the case.

    While the film offers a few laughs and some decent, gory special effects (if you're into such things), director Peter Medak ("Pontiac Moon" and the spooky 1980 film, "The Changeling") has delivered a rather flat picture with haphazard pacing and a surprising lack of suspense. Working from screenwriter Chris Brancato's ("Hoodlum") script, the movie has no room for any sort of believability or character development (yes, even films like this can cause one to suspend disbelief if done properly). It knows what's expected of it, and delivers the requisite gore and soft core porn, but not much else.

    Henstridge (the original "Species," "Maximum Risk") looks nice on screen, but isn't given much to do other than occasionally spout lines about seeing places and people on TV that she knows she'll never get to meet. Since her favorite show is "The Dukes Of Hazard," that's probably a good thing if you think of the offspring possibilities between her and the cast from that show. Michael Madsen ("Donnie Brasco") returns as the assassin hired to kill the aliens, but he seems as uninterested in playing his part as does his character in taking the job. Meanwhile Marg Helgenberger ("Fire Down Below") is okay as the concerned scientist and Mykelti Williamson ("Forrest Gump") is left to provide what little comic relief can be found in the flick.

    I could go on about all of the plot problems and inconsistencies and absent or missed opportunities, but there would be no point to that exercise. If you like the original film, you may find this one tolerable, but if you never saw the first one, don't waste your time with this sequel. Just like any sci-fi "B" movie you might click to late at night on some cable TV channel, "Species II" is quite bad and only deserves your attention for a minute or two at best before turning to another channel. We give this sequel -- that we hope is the last in the series -- a 1 out of 10.

    There are many things for parents to be cautioned about with this movie, although the age of your child/children is relevant regarding such matters. Obviously, younger kids will find most of the material rather frightening, as not only are there monsters (the aliens), but also bellies that rip open (in extremely bloody ways) and tentacles that grab and kill people. There are also several sexual encounters that show nudity and movement and also contain sexual sounds, and there's another scene with mostly nude strippers suggestively dancing.

    Profanity is extreme with 13 "f" words and others. Violence is extreme with several people being killed and a person commits suicide (albeit, not quite permanently) with a shotgun blast in the mouth. Since some kids will probably want to see this film, we strongly suggest that you look through the content to decide whether it's appropriate or not for them.

  • People drink in a bar.
  • People have wine at a reception/dinner.
  • A woman carries wine for her and Patrick.
  • A gooey substance drips down onto the floor of a spaceship and oozes its way toward the crew.
  • Baker subjects Eve -- in a test -- to some sort of corrosive gas that causes bloody lesions to form all over her body (that then quickly heal and disappear).
  • Many scenes include shots where we see tentacles erupting out of people's bodies.
  • There are several instances where we see women -- whose bellies quickly grow after being impregnated by Patrick -- have their bellies rip or split open and explode in a bloody mess (and a bloody, toddler-sized child comes out).
  • A large vial of blood spills onto the floor and then runs across it.
  • A man who's killed is bloody.
  • Another woman's belly rips open, and the man she's with is killed and is bloody, as are the sheets underneath her.
  • We see a very bloody body on an autopsy table. The chest has been opened and is very bloody and gory, and the technician then takes an electric saw and begins sawing open the skull (heard more than seen, but it goes on for half a minute or so).
  • We see Patrick in bed with a dead and very bloody woman whose belly has exploded and the bed is very bloody.
  • A man puts a shotgun in his mouth, pulls the trigger, and blows his head off. The explosion is very bloody, and we then see a "stump" that slowly grows back into a human head.
  • Lennox briefly picks up a sheet that's sopping wet with blood.
  • Patrick's clothes are very bloody after burying his latest victim.
  • A gooey tentacle comes from Patrick's mouth and goes into Baker's.
  • We briefly see some black and white photos of the dead and bloody women.
  • We see a tentacle erupt from a man's throat and then see that it, and his gut, are quite bloody.
  • We see many gooey, hanging cocoons in Patrick's lair and see tentacles erupt from a child's body that then engulf him in a cocoon.
  • Eve is very bloody after being riddled with machine gun fire (and we see pools of blood flowing from her body), but those wounds quickly heal.
  • A man's leg is very bloody after he's been impaled with a pitchfork.
  • Eve, and the sheets covering her, are extremely bloody.
  • Patrick disobeys the quarantine of sexual activity and has sex with several women (resulting in their deaths), although it's debatable how much of his behavior is of his own free will.
  • Some may see Baker's experiments on a half human, half alien creature as having both.
  • Lennox is a professional assassin, but here he only goes after the aliens.
  • Depending on one's age and tolerance level, the scenes listed here (and under "Violence") may or may not be frightening to viewers.
  • The massive amounts of goo, gore, and blood may cause some viewers to be tense.
  • The latter appearances of Patrick and Eve as alien creatures may be frightening to some viewers.
  • A gooey substance drips down onto the floor of a spaceship and oozes its way toward the crew.
  • Patrick sprouts tentacles as he has sex with a woman who screams in horror. Meanwhile, another woman he just had sex with writhes in pain and terror as her belly quickly grows until it bursts open in a bloody mess.
  • A tentacle bursts out from a wall and grabs a man, killing him.
  • A woman's belly rips open, a tentacle from it grabs the man with her and slams him against a wall, killing him.
  • Some may find a scene where the scientists radiate Eve (where we see brief glimpses of her alien self as well as her fluttering, whites only of her eyes) as unsettling.
  • Patrick grabs a woman from a grocery store, carries her from it and drags her into a van where he starts to (or tries to) rape her.
  • We see many gooey, hanging cocoons in Patrick's lair and see tentacles erupt from a child's body that then engulf him in a cocoon.
  • The ending confrontational sequence with the aliens may be tense to some viewers.
  • Machine guns: Carried by soldiers in an exercise and later used repeatedly by others to shoot Eve.
  • Shotgun: A man puts the barrel in his mouth, pulls the trigger and blows his head off.
  • Handgun: Carried by Lennox, pointed at Patrick and others, and fired at the alien.
  • Machete: Carried by Gamble.
  • Phrases: "Go f*ck yourself," "Laid" "Come" and "Banging" (sexual), "Booty" (slang term for "ass"), "Butt kissing," "Geez," "Piss it all away," "Alien she-bitch," "Nutcase," and "Bastards."
  • A man puts a shotgun in his mouth, pulls the trigger, and blows his head off.
  • Eve is blasted by gunfire, but her wounds quickly heal (younger kids might get a false idea about getting shot).
  • A tentacle comes out of a wall and grabs a man.
  • A tentacle leaps out of a dead woman's face.
  • A cat suddenly lands on a woman.
  • The movie is full of frightening and suspenseful music.
  • None.
  • At least 13 "f" words (1 used sexually), 3 "s" words, 1 slang term for male genitals (the "d" word), 17 hells, 8 damns, 4 asses, 2 S.O.B.'s, 2 craps, and 8 uses of "G-damn," 5 of "Oh my God," 2 each of "God" and "My God," and 1 use each of "For God's sakes," "Oh God," and "Jesus Christ" as exclamations.
  • We see Eve who is seated and nude (other than some thin straps that cover just the center of her breasts).
  • A doctor tells the three astronauts that they are quarantined from sexual activity for ten days to which Ann says, "Oh, you've got to be kidding."
  • Patrick lies on top of a woman and we see passionate kissing and hear heavy breathing, but that's it (no nudity).
  • Patrick goes to a hotel room where he's greeted by a woman who's brought along her "sister." Moments later we see Patrick having sex (with movement and sounds) from a distance while the other woman watches. We then see the first woman's bare breasts and butt. The second woman then comes over and says, "It's my turn." She undresses and we see her bare breasts and butt as Patrick climbs on top of her (we see his bare butt). We then see movement (and hear sounds) as they have sex under the sheets, and this continues as tentacles come from his body and the woman under him screams.
  • A woman climbs on top of Patrick, removes her negligee, and we see her bare breasts. She tells him to relax, that she'll do "all of the work," and we then see her kissing down his chest.
  • We see Ann in bed with some man (perhaps her husband) and they have sex with her on top of him under the covers (movement, but no nudity) and he has his hands on her clothed breasts.
  • Gamble and a woman begin to undress and he gets on top of her, and between her legs, but they're interrupted before anything happens (no nudity). As he leaves, he states that he hasn't "been laid in eleven months."
  • It's implied that Patrick has sex with many other women and we see him picking up prostitutes.
  • A motel manager makes a sexual joke about his clientele, "They come and they go. They come...and they go."
  • We see bare-breasted strippers who wear thong-like bottoms that show their bare butts. We then see them suggestively dance and rub against the poles and one woman spreads her legs for all to see.
  • Gamble and Lennox see a van in a parking lot that's rocking back and forth and find a young couple inside fooling around (we don't see anything but the surprised couple).
  • Patrick and Eve disrobe and we see her bare breasts and butt. They stand and passionately kiss and we see flashes of them as aliens having tentacle intertwined sex (tentacles from one body going into the other and a tentacle coming out of her breast).
  • Lennox smokes once and Baker takes a drag from his cigarette.
  • A prostitute smokes and a motel manager has a cigar in his mouth.
  • There's a very brief moment where Ross talks to Patrick about his (the son's) dead mother.
  • The more serious side of genetic research.
  • That getting shot (or committing suicide) is permanent and does not heal quickly or at all (as occurs with the human-looking aliens in this film).
  • A mental patient throws a chair that hits a TV, causing it to explode.
  • Baker subjects Eve -- in a test -- to some sort of corrosive gas that causes bloody lesions to form all over her body (that then quickly heal and disappear).
  • A woman's swollen belly rips open as her offspring erupts from there, killing her.
  • A tentacle comes out of a wall and grabs a man and then kills him.
  • A woman's belly rips open, a tentacle from it grabs the man with her, and slams him against a wall, killing him.
  • A man puts a shotgun in his mouth, pulls the trigger, and blows his head off.
  • It's implied that Patrick has killed many more women (and we see him burying one) by impregnating them.
  • Patrick grabs a woman from a grocery store, carries her from it and drags her into a van where he starts to (or tries to) rape her.
  • Lennox knocks a grocery store worker to the floor.
  • Lennox breaks the back window of a van and points his gun at a couple he believed might have included Patrick.
  • Patrick hits or knocks down several guards as he escapes.
  • A man is killed as a tentacle erupts from his throat while another impales him through the gut.
  • Eve bursts through her glass cage, throws a baseball that hits a guard in the head, and then knocks other guards aside. Making it outside, guards then riddle her with machine gun fire and then do so again after the first wounds heal.
  • A tentacle grabs Gamble by the throat and begins choking him.
  • A large alien knocks several men across a room and threatens other people. A man then shoots his handgun at the creature.
  • A man stabs another man in the leg with a pitchfork and then throws it into the alien creature.

  • Reviewed April 12, 1998

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    [1917] [Bombshell] [Cats] [Little Women] [Spies In Disguise] [Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker] [Uncut Gems]

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