New York City is under turmoil due to a growing crime wave. There appears to be an organization with Japanese ancestry taking the full blame for various thefts and muggings. News reporter April O' Neil (Judith Hoag) is aggressively investigating the situation by putting the word out there to the public. She soon encounters a group of muggers and finds herself rescued by an unknown group. They are quickly revealed to be a group of human-sized, martial arts sporting, ninja Turtles.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze
The Turtles survived their battle with The Shredder, who was last seen falling from the rooftop of a building to his death. The Foot Clan have apparently went underground with most of their members locked in jail.Despite this, the Turtles have taken up refuge in April O' Neil's (Paige Turco) apartment, thinking it unsafe to return back to their sewer lair. Shredder (Francois Chau) resurfaces and begins to plot a direct attack against the Turtles. -summary
After the success of the first movie and still growing popularity of the animated series, which saw one new season after the next, and would go on to enjoy a very successful and memorable run overall. It was only a matter of time a live action sequel would see the light of day. When looking back though; who could have guessed a sequel would follow in only mere months? I sure didn't, and when looking at how much I enjoyed the first movie, plus the trailers revealed that the Turtles would be going up against two new mutants; my expectations were very high. Unfortunately, even back then I never really cared for this movie and thought it was barely tolerable. In this day and age, it felt like torture sitting through this rubbish.
Secret of the Ooze directed by Michael Pressman, is the direct sequel to the original movie, which continues the battle between the Turtles and The Foot Clan. The original movie was good, because although it meshed the light-hearted feel of the TV series with the dark tone of the comic, there was more of a focus on the latter. Unfortunately, the style of the original didn't sit well with the parents groups, and there was a pretty big fuss over it. As a result, this sequel forsakes the dark tone completely, and over-uses the comedic edge found in the animated series. Now, this was a huge issue for me, because I never liked the animated series and still don't.
Now for the things I like; the costumes are still amazing for one thing. The new additions Tokka and Rahzer, a snapping turtle and a wolf, looked really cool and gave off the appearances as real threats. At times, they were pretty entertaining to watch, with large amounts of drool running from Rahzer's mouth. Shredder also had a very menacing design towards the end, and I only wish this particular look received more screen time. The Turtles along with Splinter still looked good. I can also say the acting was good too, with Turco turning in a good enough performance. Outside of these things, there's nothing else I can say I liked about this movie at all.
From the very beginning, it was obvious this sequel was geared towards very young children, with the Turtles fooling around far more than actually fighting. In fact, they rarely drew their weapons, and the martial arts action was made up of nothing but spin kicks. The action segments were very boring, and I was busy fighting my own personal battle with the Z-monster.
The story had so much potential to be very good. Shredder was hellbent on revenge to the point where rebuilding the Foot was the least thing on his mind. He created Tokka and Rahzer from a chemical referred to as the Ooze, which is the same substance that gave the Turtles and Splinter their forms. His focus was to pit them in a life or death battle. The story was very strong and it could have easily built up into a memorable hero vs. villain showdown. Unfortunately, the plot fails all around in its execution, as it focuses heavily on the Turtles silliness, and a meaningless side character in the form of Ernie Reyes Jr. April O' Neil wasn't bad, in fact, I found her to be quite watchable, but she didn't play anywhere near a noteworthy role like in the original.
This movie carried over way too many traces from the animated series for my liking. The battles with the Foot were incredibly lame, and I just can't forgive how Toshishiro Obata as Tatsu was used. His soon to be legendary skills were wasted completely in this swill. Real martial arts fans would have loved to see him display his sword skills with Leonardo. It could have been a real spectacle had this movie been taken a little bit serious. The movie also has its share of numerous inconsistencies; such as one scene showing the Turtles with their weapons, then all of a sudden without them. Plus when Shredder was mutated by the ooze, for some reason, his outfit was mutated with him. Seriously, how can even die-hard fans miss such an obvious plot hole? Vanilla Ice also makes a short appearance that catches a lot of heat. But I feel he's completely overshadowed by the random nonsense and busted up script.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Secret of the Ooze was hard for me to sit through 20 years ago. Now it was just a hellacious 88 minute ride. I didn't like anything about this movie; the action was god awfully boring, character interactions were very stale, comedy a majority of the time was flat and about as funny as roadkill. This movie isn't for me; it's a complete 180 from the original, and it caters heavily towards kids and fans of the TV series. I only recommend it for those two groups.
Pros: -They're in low supply
Cons: -Meant for a very specific audience
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May 22, 2011
Jun 15, 2013 08:21 PM UTC
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