Short Circuit 2 - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Short Circuit 2 Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ March 8, 2015
Back in the days when you didn't get too many sequels (imagine that) we actually got this surprising follow up. Most of the original cast are now long gone as we focus on Fisher Stevens Indian character as he tries to eek out an existence in the big city (NY) selling toys of Number 5. Before you can say Number 5 is al...Number 5 returns for his next adventure, out of the sticks and into the Big Apple.

It would be very easy to assume this sequel would be a lazy cash grab, after all the big stars are gone and they have promoted the sidekick character of the first movie to lead role status. Well yes and no, yes this obviously came to ride the coattails of the original which means basically the same hijinks as before but set in a city environment. On the other hand they do expand on what came before and evolve Number 5's character pretty well, he now wears a red scarf you know. Now christened Johnny 5 (typical cool sounding 80's nickname), his metallic body has been modded and adorned with cool stickers and whatnot, he has more knowledge, he's a little more street smart and a little more human smart.

This time the plot revolves around Johnny 5 helping Fisher Stevens character build a small army of Johnny 5 toys to sell to this big company. They are doing this inside a warehouse which also just happens to be in use by some crooks trying to tunnel their way into the nearby bank. Of course one main angle of the story is once again seeing Johnny 5 interact with folk in the city, he's not suppose to get out of the warehouse for his own safety but naturally does and goes on an input rampage. Now even though I'm very sure many of you can guess the type of antics Johnny 5 gets up to, its still actually very amusing and entertaining. 5 goes up against stereotypical 80's street hustlers and beats them at their own game, he reads a gazillion books in the local book store, goes for a bit of hang gliding, goes to church, gets arrested, wears some human attire and helps out some stereotypical 80's street trash in pinching car stereos. A nice slice of easy going predictable hokem much in the same realm as Mick Dundee's adventures in Nu Yawk.

The whole sequence where 5 gets manipulated by the street gang sums up the whole theme of the plot really. Its all about poor little Number 5 getting taken for a ride, he's out of his depth and his innocent good nature is exploited by various slime-balls. The entire main plot is actually a twist on this notion as you discover towards the end, didn't see it coming gotta admit. This is where this sequel does improve on the original in my opinion, it takes 5 out of the relatively safe countryside and plops him in the concrete jungle, a deceptively dangerous environment for any outsider/foreigner. 5 isn't the young child he used to be but more of a brash teen, over confident, eager, hopeful and alas still very gullible, the city setting really brings out those emotions with great effect.

The most heart crushing moment of course being the sequence where Johnny 5 is beaten half to death by the bank robbers. Now this one scene is still easily one of the most heart wrenching moments in cinematic history, even E.T. has a tough time beating this. After 5 realises he has been tricked by a very close friend (throughout the whole film) he makes a run for it. The henchmen go after him, eventually catch him and attack 5 with iron crowbars smashing him to pieces before your eyes! Battery fluid sprays like blood, they rip his arm off, his caterpillar tracks are destroyed, metal debris goes flying and in the most shocking moment for any child...they batter 5's head destroying one eye completely. I think the agonising sound of Tim Blaney's (5's voice) cries for help in this sequence really make for an emotionally scarring scene. Johnny 5 pleads for them to stop as he is slowly destroyed, begging them not to disassemble him. What you see will ruin your day even now, hell it almost ruins the movie its so distressing! as a child it ended you're world.

Towards the finale things start to get a bit silly admittedly as the main bad guy goes on the run. Johnny 5 manages to repair himself with a little help but he's pissed and out for revenge, so to get that point across he tacks a load of extra metal junk onto himself giving a heavy metal punk orientated appearance complete with eye patch and DIY mohawk. We then get a sequence where 5 captures the henchmen who wrecked him and proceeds to give them a good beat down, well a goofy childish cartoonish beat down. We then get this quite farcical chase sequence between Johnny 5 and the main villain in a speed boat...oh yes. 5 manages to eventually catch up to the very fast speed boat (beats me) and captures the main villain in an impossibly hilarious way. All this accompanied to the tune of 'I Need a Hero' by Bonnie Tyler I might add.

To top it all 5 even gets the C3PO treatment (errr copy much?) right at the end when he appears to have been fixed up in gold plated metal from top to bottom. This makes him look like a large trophy or a large piece of bling which would require sunglasses to look at, oh and he becomes an official US citizen too...hey who am I to judge huh.

Its all so chucklesome because Johnny 5 literately moves at a snails pace and speedy agility is not on the cards. In reality the bad guy would of gotten away by a good country mile and 5 would be trundling along like an OAP in a mobility scooter. But we overlook all that, all the obvious flaws, plot holes, impossibilities, unbelievable coincidences etc...after all this is still a movie for kids just like the first film. I do think this sequel is actually better than the first mainly because it offers more thrills and spills, more laughs and a much greater scope with clearly better production values. Sure its more preposterous and hokey with extra layers of good-natured schmaltz for good measure, despite missing Sheedy and Guttenberg, but you simply can't fail to love little Johnny 5 and his zest for life.
Super Reviewer
July 2, 2014
Sequel to Shirt Circuit is a good attempt at following up the original film, but honestly, I felt that it could have been better as well. The original film was terrific at had charm throughout with a good cast of good actors. Here, we get a bit of the same, but it feels watered down slightly, forced in order to make it appealing, almost as if they tried to outdo what the original did. I'm not saying that this sequel is bad, far from it, as it does have its moments, but it does leave a bit to be desired in the long run. I guess this one suffers the same fate as all sequels do. They try to replicate the original, yet fail because the first outing was very good and its follow up lacked the flair that made the original so entertaining. Here we have a mildly good film, but throughout the film we always get a sense that it tries to outdo the first, but it loses its steam halfway and it just becomes an average movie. Short Circuit 2 is good, but it's not great either. I've seen better sequels than this, and this one just doesn't possess anything truly engaging. If you're looking for a truly entertaining sequel, you won't find it here, I mean it does have its moments, but it also could have been much better as well. Short Circuit 2 in the end feels rushed in its conception, and the result ends up being a so-so film that is good, but you are simple left wanting more out of this film.
Super Reviewer
May 7, 2011
A guilty pleasure. That personally, I think better them the first picture.
Super Reviewer
½ January 25, 2008
I can barely remember the first one in all honesty. This one I watched thanks to free movie website Crackle. (I can just see this website is going to be bad news for me. I really can't resist an 80's movie - particularly one I missed out on first time around. Even if I did miss out on it for a reason as with this one!).
This is actually kind of cute. If it was made today, I would write it off as kidsy crap (and that is still a fair comment), but as it does have the 80's nostalgia thing going for it... pretty watchable. The bits with Johnny 5 are a little tedious, the Indian guy is so stereotyped it is almost offensive, (but hey, 80's movie. PC didn't exist back then!), and the bad guys are a bit annoying, but it is funny in it's way and Cynthia Gibb shines as Sandy.
Buy it? No way, but watch for free - no complaints here!
Super Reviewer
August 19, 2010
We bought this DVD for $2, which is less than the cost of a bootleg. Our son likes it because it has a robot in it. The 1980's kitsch...that's for daddy. SC2 harkens back to a time when everyone went around quoting The Church Lady, and street gangs went to the trouble of making up rhymes about themselves. It's also fun to see 1988 downtown Toronto, since no effort whatsoever has been made to dress it up like New York City. Overal, this is a light-hearted family comedy, except for the oddly brutal scene, where a couple of goons beat Johnny 5 to pieces, while he wails "Please don't kill me! I am alive! Aaaaahhh!". Don't worry though. SPOILER -The movie ends with a freeze frame of Johnny 5 jumping for joy, and the credits roll over happy saxophone music. Thank you 1980's.
Super Reviewer
½ August 15, 2009
Unlike many sequels, "Short Circuit 2" is a good one. Johnny 5's creator, Ben (Fisher Stevens), is making little robot toys when a man named Fred (Michael McKean) convinces him to start a business selling them. Johnny 5 arrives to help the duo out, but some trouble arises. Some thieves who are hunting for some jewels try their best to disassemble Johnny 5 so they won't have any obstacles in their way. Johnny 5 must find a way to stop the thieves while also surviving.
The "Short Circuit" movies are some of my favorite movies of all time, I grew up watching them. Even now that I'm grown, I never get tired of seeing them over and over. In my opinion, both of the "Short Circuit" movies are great, but I like this one the best. It has some classic scenes such as when Johnny 5 tours the city for the first time and when he helps Ben talk to Sandy (Cynthia Gibb) by putting the words on a huge billboard.

"Short Circuit 2" is a great comedy and family movie. It will make you laugh in parts, some parts are sad, and others are heartwarming. Some parts even have a hint of an action movie in them. If you want to see a movie that you'll never forget, watch "Short Circuit 2." I recommend everybody to get it. NOTE: That was my Amazon review from the year 2000. I've always loved the Johnny 5 Short Circuit movies and never understood why only two were ever made, 80's classics for sure! I still can't make up my mind which I like better....probably the original slightly, but still.
Super Reviewer
December 3, 2006
Directed by: Kenneth Johnson.
Starring: Fisher Stevens, Cynthia Gibb, Michael McKean, Tim Blaney.

<< "I thought you said this thing mis-functioned on you."..."Oh, that is a falsity. What actually happened was we were working on him one day and suddenly he is struck by lightning. And, from this moment on, he's having a mind of his own. So, the government tried to destroy him so he ran away. So, now he's living with my friend in Montana, in a cabin, in the woods, in... cognito." >>

I find it quite stupid that people think this is better than the original. Personally though I don't hate the film, but I do feel it is quite inferior to the original and has the air about it that it is simply a cash in. But if you can over look the horribly mediocre and unfocused first act, the film picks up the pace, delivers a decent enough storyline and keeps Johnny 5 as the main focus, even when the script is not as charming or funny. Acceptable enough.

Full review coming soon.
Super Reviewer
½ January 25, 2007
better than the first. an interesting way to pose the philosophical questions about A.I. in a family oriented film.
Super Reviewer
½ September 22, 2007
More from Johnny 5 - I think he gets a gold makeover in this one.
Super Reviewer
August 2, 2007
A pretty good next step. I liked the idea of the flick and the casting was done well. It had ties to the original while being it's own movie as well.
Super Reviewer
March 14, 2007
The comedy robot deals with "homies" in "the hood" in the big bad city in a project so ill advised, even Guttenberg wanted nothing to do with it...
Super Reviewer
October 25, 2006
Here's Johnny!

Somehow, a movie like this turns out to be even better than the first, what are the odds.
Super Reviewer
June 22, 2013
Johnny 5 is back and headed for the big city in Short Circuit 2. When former Nova robotics technician Ben Jahveri needs help getting his new electronics company off the ground, his old robot friend Johnny 5 comes to help and cannot wait to explore the city. The plot's really dumb and gets pretty ridiculous. The acting is also quite poor, as the actors really ham it up. But some of the comedy works, and the cheesiness can be a bit of fun. While it has none of the heart or cleverness of the original, Short Circuit 2 is an amusing mess of a film that has some laughs.
Super Reviewer
August 6, 2007
Super Reviewer
May 1, 2016
I think I preferred this to the original. It certainly had more character development and it was nice to see Johnny 5 show his more sinister side. Unsurprisingly this franchise is in the process of a remake.
Super Reviewer
June 26, 2008
not bad sequel to the original. I still have to find these movies to rent for my son.
April 26, 2016
Sequel to the 1986 hit comedy is more of the same minus the original cast. Stevens returns as the developer of number five but unfortunately the plot gives him nothing to do and he's all but gone off screen for fifty minutes.
February 28, 2015
The comical heart and mind has been upgraded to be funnier and a really good sequel that was about to perform better than its predecessor, but until the serious turn around the climax. (A-)

(Full review coming soon - with better wording probably)
September 1, 2014
I found Short Circuit 2 to be better than the first part: it was funnier, the robot "Johnny 5" is more involved in almost every scene. And it's also cool to see how he even plays the hero part at the end of the movie even though he was about to expire. I really enjoyed this movie...I completely disagree with all the harsh critics, check it out!
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