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Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)

tomatometer

67

Average Rating: 6/10
Critic Reviews: 9
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 3

No consensus yet.

audience

57

liked it
Average Rating: 3/5
User Ratings: 267,061

My Rating

Movie Info

Where the original Gremlins was a horror film spiked with comedy, Gremlins 2: The New Batch is essentially a black comedy, with a couple of horrifying touches. As the film starts, the fantastical trinket shop in Chinatown, which sold the Mogwai in the first film, is demolished by a crazed multi-media businessman called Daniel Clamp (John Glover). The heroes from the first movie, Billy (Zach Galligan) and Kate (Phoebe Cates), happen to work for Clamp in his huge high-rise. They find the Mogwai

PG-13,

Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Comedy

Charles S. Haas

Aug 20, 2002

Warner Home Video

Watch It Now

Cast

Latest News on Gremlins 2: The New Batch

February 7, 2007:
"Goonies 2?" "Gremlins 3?" "Scooby-Doo 3???"
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All Critics (43) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (29) | Rotten (13) | DVD (16)

This uninhibited and uproarious monster bash, directed by Joe Dante, is more quick-witted and ironic than the original; it sets forth a savvy, slaphappy agenda before the opening credits and follows it straight through to the end, and even beyond.

November 7, 2011 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An hilarious sequel featuring equal parts creature slapstick for the small fry and satirical barbs for adults.

March 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's almost enough in-joke ingenuity to justify the total absence of plot.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out | Comment (1)
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Speaks to the gleeful hell-raising monster in each of us, and it speaks with much more verve, cleverness and good humor than the film on which it is based. Add this to the very short list of sequels that neatly surpass their predecessors.

August 30, 2004 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Too many gremlins and not enough story line.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (2)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Wicked fun.

January 1, 2000
Film.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Campy horror sequel has unrelenting cartoonish violence.

June 12, 2013 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

An odd, but rewarding sequel that ups the ante on comedy and effects, and manages to offer a refreshing spoof of the first film.

May 22, 2012 Full Review Source: IGN DVD
IGN DVD

... is one of the funniest comedies of its time, a veritable live-action cartoon from Joe Dante at his most unrestrained.

May 19, 2012 Full Review Source: Seanax.com
Seanax.com

No, this was not your daddy's Gremlins movie. This was an entirely different kind of beast that was just made up of the same DNA.

May 12, 2012 Full Review Source: Dread Central

Any movie with former Dracula Christopher Lee as a scientist who creates a gremlin-bat can't be all bad, but there's a reason we never received a Gremlins 3.

May 8, 2012 Full Review Source: Creative Loafing
Creative Loafing

An amazing achievement despite a total lack of sincerity, and any film that can successfully work Slayer's grinding tune Angel of Death into the action is a masterpiece as far as I'm concerned.

June 19, 2010 Full Review Source: BrianOrndorf.com
BrianOrndorf.com

A riot from start to finish.

August 21, 2009 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Actually better than the original in many ways: it's darker and more cynical, contains more pop culture references and takes on a bigger target.

August 14, 2006 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

A loving celebration, and biting critique, of our pop culture-saturated times.

January 19, 2006 Full Review Source: Lessons of Darkness
Lessons of Darkness

Wilder than the first....a laugh riot!

March 23, 2005
Moviehole

Surprisingly agreeable sequel.

November 12, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Simply: This is Christopher Lee's 200th film. He plays a character called Dr. Catheter. I love movies.

August 14, 2003
New Times

Surprisingly thought-provoking as extended commentary on modern life and morality.

July 30, 2003 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide | Comment (1)
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Awesome sequel! The gremlins have more clever bits and satirize themselves in this brilliant postmodern horror-comedy.

July 14, 2003
About.com

Underrated sequel that gets better with age.

July 6, 2003
Your Movies (cleveland.com)

Less scary than the original, but much funnier -- though the theatrical version has a scene with Hulk Hogan that's unwisely replaced by one of John Wayne on the video.

October 19, 2002
New Times

Audience Reviews for Gremlins 2: The New Batch

Six years after the original smash hit and Dante comes along with this newish sequel. The intro to the film is an animated Looney Tunes segment with Bugs and Daffy which is meant to hint at the wackiness you were about to see, not good.

The plot this time is virtually the same deal as before but this time its set in New York and within a huge futuristic skyscraper, well for the time anyway. Of course the other reason for this sequel was mainly to do everything over again with much better effects and creature puppetry. Now I'm all for this no doubt but at least they could of gone for a fresher storyline.

There are many problems with this sequel which is a shame as the effects are indeed much better (although the original films were damn good). It starts off OK with good continuity seeing old Mr Wing again in his little shop with 'Gizmo'. Unsure if the first film setting of this Chinatown location was in New York though, I always kinda thought it was San Francisco for some reason. Anyway it makes sense that the old man dies and Gizmo is left alone in the world, not too sure about the fact they bulldoze the little store before clearing it though.

Eventually the film sticks to its new location for the action within this skyscraper. I still find it funny that this huge building would have its own animal testing floor filled with various animals of all shapes and sizes. Also the fact it appears to have lots of shops and eating establishments along with filming studios and its own TV cable network! all this with office areas higher up where lots of desk jockeys work feverishly to look good for the big boss 'Clamp'. Obviously its all just setups for the Gremlin action to come but it really seems quite odd that this building has everything in it as if it were a mall when its suppose to be a place of business and work.

I guess the main issues begin when the Gremlin mayhem kicks off. It all starts out fine and relatively sensible if lighter in tone, but it just gets ludicrous. The first thing that hits you straight in the face is the horrendous slapstick schlock that Dante gets the creatures to do, the first film had it but it was set within a dark tone, this film is virtually a cartoon (as laid out for you by Bugs n Daffy at the start). I really enjoyed the different ideas they used with the Gremlins...a bat hybrid, a spider, an electric poltergeist-like Gremlin, an intelligent Gremlin, a Gremlin made up of vegetables and naturally the obligatory female Gremlin. But the whole thing came off like 'The Muppet Show', albeit Muppets with a more sadistic crazy edge.

The female Gremlin was clearly a play or rip off from 'Miss Piggy' if you ask me, right down to the awful little musical number where she/it appears in a very 'Muppet-esque/Piggy' way from beneath a huge self portrait picture.

The other thing that irked me was the hideous self parodies/meta-references of the franchise and others. A cringeworthy self indulgent sequence where a movie critic is giving the original film a bad review and is then attacked by Gremlins, the bat hybrid Gremlin flies out of the building crashing through a wall leaving the famous Batman logo as a hole, some Gremlins where anti-Gizmo t-shirts and there is a Gremlin logo on the cable network when it goes down. And finally there's the sequence midway where the film actually stops as if Gremlins had invaded the cinema where you the audience were watching. We then get an embarrassing cameo with Hulk Hogan breaking the fourth wall, did it really have to go that far Dante?.

The inclusion of Dick Miller's character and his wife felt very forced too, not only that but I'm pretty sure they were killed off in the first film. There was no reason for them to be in this film other than some visual recognition from the first, a simple link. The whole notion that those two characters were suppose to stay with 'Peltzer' and 'Kate' in their small apartment is so stupid, and why would they be visiting them anyway??. These people weren't that close in the first film, just neighbourhood folk.

Plus I noticed Dante literately cast everyone he has ever worked with in this film, even Rick Ducommun and Henry Gibson get some screen time here. Amazing cast of character actors and cameos in this film.

Gotta ask but why is it everytime Gizmo get wets and produces new Mogwai they always turn out evil?. How come none ever turn out nice like Giz? you'd think they would genetically be like Gizmo. I didn't really like the new goofy Gremlins, it just felt like The Three Stooges and was just dumb, the various cartoon sound effects didn't help either. I know the film was suppose to be lighter but Jesus those new Gremlins were annoying, the two evil none insane Gremlins were nice and errr...evil, but again they didn't really look too different, the effects guys didn't wanna move away from the mohawk look did they sheesh!.

All the Gremlins look fantastic in this new film I must say, the detail and animatronic puppet work is astoundingly good from the realistic skin colour and patterns to every small snarling facial movement. There are also some nice effects using stop motion and bluescreen which are obvious but do still hold up quite well, it all shows how well these effects can work. It might be most costly sure but I think everyone would agree its worth it in the end, the final result looks awesome especially with the vast numbers of Gremlins on display this time. Beats the f**ck outta CGI I can tell you.

I want to like this film but its hard. The idea is reasonable giving us a wider range of Gremlins with new designs and more havoc, which is what you wanted really, but they dumbed it down too much. A lighter version is not a problem but the self referential jokes and small nonsensical plotless sequences felt more like a collection of sketches from a TV show (the 'Phantom of the Opera' Gremlin sequence). It makes the whole film feel like a spoof when its not really meant to be, not to that degree anyway, and the fact that the female Gremlin survives simply makes a mockery of films finale, who cares.

I love the creature effects and there are still some really nice moments of Gremlin gore and horror which hint at what could of been. Unfortunately it just gets lost in a sea of zany childish wackiness that doesn't really appeal to adults, fans of the original or kids because its still a bit too scary for them, so really it has no decent target audience.
December 26, 2013
phubbs1

Super Reviewer

So freakin' stupid, and the movie knew it and tried to salvage itself by getting self-referential and ridiculous. The only really funny part was Kate starting her suicidally depressing Lincoln's Birthday story as a send-up to her most awful Christmas story in the prequel.
July 31, 2013
aliceinpunderland

Super Reviewer

Aside from breaking the fourth wall multiple times, there is not really anything particularly bad about the second instalment of "Gremlins," but it just feels like the same thing, done in a bigger way. It's undeniably a very fun film to watch, but the plot is lazy and the characters are unintentionally hilarious. This time, our main characters from the original have now grown up and made a life for themselves, but as Gizmo comes back into their lives, all hell breaks loose. This feels like a children's version of "Die Hard!" I had a blast laughing at all the slapstick and the action (along with the visuals) is actually very well-produced. I can't give much credit to this film, because it seems like a rehash, but it was a very enjoyable one!
March 29, 2013
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

Gremlins was such a fun comedic monster flick. Obviously a sequel was in order. Although not as great as the original, Gremlins 2 has enough good elements to appeal to fans of the first film. The first Gremlins was such a great horror comedy, that it's almost hard to try and recapture the magic, fun and thrills of the first. Although not a great film, this sequel does a pretty good job at delivering what you'd expect. Director Joe Dante delivers a good sequel to his 1984 film. With this sequel, he makes the film somewhat more fun, and crazy than the first film. I thought it was a sequel worth watching, while not as great as the first film, Gremlins 2 delivers on the craziness. Joe Dante is a phenomenal director, and he delivers a film that is worth your time. The film tries a bit too hard at outdoing the first film. Even with that said, I still enjoyed this film, thought it was loads of fun from start to finish and still had everything that the first enjoyable. As far as horror comedies are concerned, Gremlins 2 is a welcome addition to the genre, and though not as great as the first, still manages to bring on good laughs and scares. I very much recommend this film and if you've enjoyed the first film, you're sure to enjoy this zany sequel. Gremlins 2 has its faults, but in the end it's mindless fun, which is what this film strives for. A must see film for horror comedy fans. The film may not be as memorable as the first, but is still provides you with a good time.
April 15, 2012
TheDudeLebowski65
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

    1. Dr. Catheter: We can't let them get away. All they have to do is eat three or four children and there'd be the most appalling publicity.
    – Submitted by Jason N (2 years ago)
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