The Fly II could never live up to David Cronenberg’s 1986 remake. The Fly (1986) was simply too popular not to expect a sequel. Even though Cronenberg was replaced by the first film’s Oscar winning makeup artist Chris Walas. Which is why The Fly II is gross for the sake of being gross. Jeff Goldblum is only seen in archive video since John Getz is the only actor who returns. Geena Davis refused since Veronica Quaife is quickly killed in childbirth. Much like Return of the Fly, the sequel follows Seth Brundle’s son Martin.
Eric Stoltz tries, but Goldblum is a tough act to follow. The only interesting thing about Martin’s character is his rapid aging that makes him grow into a young man at 5 years old. Businessman Anton Bartok adopts and studies Martin only to recreate Brundle’s Telepods. The right set up is there, but The Fly II isn’t clever enough to do anything with it. There’s still a disgusting animal test, Martin still ends up with a girlfriend, and there’s still a jerk getting in the way.
Daphne Zuniga is fine as Beth Logan, but her relationship to Martin doesn’t feel as tragic. Stathis Borans is only around to recap the first movie and recommend a cure. Martin experiences the same fly transformation, except that he enters a cocoon. The final act turns into a slasher movie too reliant on overly gory effects. The Martinfly barely resembles a fly and isn’t nearly as iconic. I’m not sure how intentional it was, but the confusing ending is exactly the same as Return of the Fly. The Fly II inherited everything except for the cleverness of the remake.
Preceded by: The Fly (1986)