Tremors has become an interesting franchise, with a cult following, all of it coming from a sleeper hit, but something about the storyline and characters make it interesting and entertainment fun. Therefore, after the success of the first movie, Universal already planned a sequel with the thought-process that both Kevin Bacon and Reba McEntire would return to reprise their roles, but as we all know that didn’t happen – but do you know the reasons why. First Reba, declined as she was on a huge tour to support her latest release and then Kevin showed early interest however he turned it down to star in Apollo 13 (1995), and it is a rarity when Mr. Bacon reprises a role, though he starred in the The Following  series, and continue to hint that he might return in future flick in the series. Regardless of when the news broke that neither of them was returning to their roles, the producers cut the budget from $17 million to $4 million (the first film had a budget of $8 million) and moved it their direct-to-video division, with little promotion and figured it was a lost cause. Nevertheless, the fans proved them wrong, as the film manages to be thoroughly entertaining namely expanding the life cycle of the tremor creatures, a smart move from S.S. Wilson who directed and co-wrote the script. It had an incredible small theatrical release, with on screening occurring in California, hence most saw it on video or on cable television, however the monster-creature horror fans, learned about it from articles in Fangoria magazines.
It starts a few years later in Mexico, where one sees panicked oil worker (Thomas Rosales, Jr. (Vampires )) doing a great job of staying off the ground, by leaping to wobbly oil drums, until suddenly that horrific scream. Then a cut to Earl Bassett (Fred Ward (Cardiac Arrest )) still in Perfection, Nevada, now raising ostriches, it’s just comical to watch his actions; but he’s depressed, Val is living a good life having cashed in of little fame, while he made poor financial decisions. A bothersome cab driver Grady Hoover (Christopher Gartin) drives Señor Ortega (Marcelo Tubert) from the Petromaya Oil Company, who seeks Earl’s assistance in ridding them of the invasion of Graboids. Earl dismisses the opportunity, but with Grady’s insistence, they come to terms, $50k for each one killed and $100k if one is taken alive. It’s very clear that Grady is to be the new version of Val, and while he and Earl have a smooth banter between them, it still finds itself a tad forced at times. Once at the oil company field office, they meet, fellow employees Reilly (Helen Shaver), Julio (Marco Hernandez), and Pedro (Jose Rosario), understand the full situation. Shortly after arriving in Mexico, Earl requested his hunting supplies but realizes he needs reinforcements, hence fan favorite character of the series Burt Gummer (Michael Gross (Sometimes They Come Back Again )) arrives in an AM General M-35 military truck with so much overwhelming firepower it marvels most viewers. One learns Heather (Reba McEntire) left him, which was a simplistic way to write her out of the script, and he spends his time watching war documentaries, and begins creating his own theories about the graboids. As the teams split up, we discover that the creatures are evolving, (a very smart move on behalf of the filmmakers) now called Shriekers; which are bipedal, and instead of vibrations sensitive, it’s hunting method in seeing heat signatures, and by eating it reproduces asexual. There’re wonderful hilarious moments created involving Burt from his survival of a shrieker attack, noting he was not clearly informed of situation and needed better intel all leading to a wonderful exploding ending.
The movie is very entertaining, which is very surprising for a sequel, and incorporates the usage of practical, special effects and some CGI, using puppeteers to manipulate the b-movie creatures, allowing for a well-paced film, with a few solid dialogues layered with comedic tones that actually hit their marks. The directorial debut of Wilson, isn’t a dreadful hinderance, not perfect however he delivers a movie that doesn’t look it was cheaply made and aided by composer Jay Ferguson’s score.
First the entire series, makes for a delightful day for the franchise, hence this is a very rewatchable movie, especially as it pleases the monster fans, which gives great insight to the lifecycle of the graboid species. It helps to smooth over the aspects of that lost charm of the first movie, and then adds in more of orange splatter and a tinge more screams all on a low budget; but not the last in the fun series.
- The Worms have turned.
- Evolution: It’s a bitch
IMDb Rating: 6.0/10
Baron’s Rating: 6.0/10