My History With the Film:Pet Semetary 2 caught my attention back in 1992, because Pet Semetary was arguably the biggest horror movie to come out in 1989-1990, at least in the eyes of the elementary school kids I hung around with. Everyone loved Pet Semetary and it was not surprising to see a sequel come out. It starred an unrecognizable Anthony Edwards (Goose from Top Gun, prior to showing up on ER) and Edward Furlong, lovingly referred to as that kid from Terminator 2.
Until October 2017, I hadn’t seen Pet Semetary 2 since the early 90’s and honestly didn’t know what to expect. It only took me about fifteen minutes into the movie to realize that I remembered it better than I did the original Pet Semetary. It’s different and arguably inferior to the original, but I enjoyed it way more than I expected.
What the Film is About (Non-Spoiler):An ancient Indian burial ground gets used to raise the dead again with unsuspecting results.
What I Did Like About the Film:-The cast is strong. Edward Furlong (Terminator 2) plays a great brooding, depressed child and Anthony Edwards (ER) plays a dad who is trying too hard. Clancy Brown (The Shawshank Redemption) is amazing as a son of a bitch and you just want him to die almost as soon as he first graces the screen. Jason McGuire is fantastic and it’s sad he only has three credited roles to his name (Forest Gump, Pet Semetary 2, and Leap of Faith).
-The pacing of the film is really good. It gets off to a great start and never really slows down.
-The animals in this movie are amazing.
-It’s not common for me to fall for a fake out, but the opening scene features a woman walking down a gothic staircase and I immediately thought to myself, “What did I get myself into? Are they really going to link this cemetery to some European castle?” Then I realized it was part of a movie set and I breathed a sigh of relief.
-The gore and effects were fantastic, especially in the final scenes.
What I Didn't Like About the Film:
-The use of animals in this movie creates fantastic horror, but also really pushes my buttons at times. I guess that’s what a good movie does, but for someone who likes animals this can be a bit hard to watch. The antagonists in this film have no regard for animal life.
-The third act is pretty crazy. I mean, Pet Semetary 2 kinda goes off the rails with crazy, but I enjoyed it.
Additional Notes:-The monster arm skeleton used at the beginning of the picture is actually from the skeleton found in the pond in IT (1990).
Pet Semetary 2 encapsulates what I love about 1990’s horror. It tells a good story at a good pace, and doesn’t shy away from anything. It doesn’t try to be something that it’s not and instead gives good actors plenty of space to develop characters and create tension. Is it a perfect movie? Of course not, but it’s a damn enjoyable way to spend a couple hours and still get that Stephen King vibe.
I rate Pet Semetary 2 as a seven out of ten and say it’s a rental. This might be blasphemous in horror circles, but I enjoyed watching Pet Semetary 2 more than Pet Semetary. I just felt like the film was more polished even if it abandons the horror towards the end and gets campy.