Scanners II: The New Order Reviews
Just another one of those horrible 90's sequels to a successful sci-fi/horror film.
That aside, Scanners 2 is one of those movies that throws up a new plothole or inconsistency every couple of minutes, but most of these aren't important - the ones that bothered me were the ones that directly contradicted the original. Here are the two main offenders:
First of all, when did the ability to Scan cease to be a crippling condition? In the original, a Scanner could not function around even relatively small groups of people without being bombarded with the thoughts of those around them - something which would cause the Scanner unbearable pain. Yet in this film, our hero David Hewlett (he played Worth in The Cube!) is in medical School and seems fine, except that recently he's been getting occasional headaches. Scanning appears to have gone from an uncontrollable condition (without the use of ephemerol, anyway - more on that later) to a source of minor discontent and the film never explains when or how this change occured.
And second, what in the name of fuck actually happened to ephemerol? In this film, a doctor tries to help Scanners supress the negative effects of their condition (which, as we've seen, aren't all that bad anymore) with a drug called EPH-2, which as well as being more addictive than even the finest heroine, produces some very unpleasant side-effects, such as making the user dead. But we already know from the first film that ephemerol also supresses the effects of scanning and it didn't turn anyone into junkies or corpses, so why not just use that? I know both those points sound nit-picky, but you have to understand that the first film was a complete, self-contained film that set its own mythology forth in no uncertain terms. That a sequel made nine years after the fact should forget these things is unforgivable; that it's done out of sheer stupidity rather than any particular malice makes it no less so.
Right. I'll leave you with my favourite line, said after David Hewlett (The Cube was a good movie, though, wasn't it?) admits to his soon-to-be girlfriend that he's been getting headaches:
"Well at least you don't have canine encephalitis!"