(aka; "Hello, my name is Lance Henrikson and my career is over")
I just saw one of the worst films ever made. Boy oh boy, was this one painful to watch. I can't think of one single good thing to say about any of it. Except maybe the fact that I'll never have to watch it again.
The Mangler 2 - Graduation Day is set in what's supposed to be one of the best schools in America. The school has a new security system added which then turns psychotic (just like you will if you ever see this picture) after a deadly virus called "The Mangler
Version 2.0" is introduced by one of the students. Lance Henrikson's headmaster character states that the new computer and security system is the "future of schools everywhere." Let's just pray that this isn't the future of films everywhere. There's an especially ironic moment where a chef criticises the computer calling it a "useless piece of American garbage."
Lance Henrikson now looks about 100 years old; I suspect it was this film which was responsible. Anyway, the students are all sent away on a field trip leaving behind just cheerleader girl, grunge boy, jock boy, alternative girl and black boy together with a few teachers and staff members. Once the virus is introduced, the pain really begins. Ours, not the characters.
Cue numerous shots of magically powered lengths of cable and wire being responsible for some of the lamest and most stupid murder sequences that I've ever seen. Here's an example for ya. A teacher in a wheelchair tries to use a lift platform but somehow gets catapulted down the stairs instead. A thin piece of electric cable wraps itself around the fire axe (which is conveniently hanging on the wall above the teacher), picks it up and then hits him with it. Presumably 'cause you don't actually see it since the camera quickly cuts away to the next scene as soon as the axe starts to move downwards. You don't see any violence in this "horror". The most you do see is some red drops of paint being thrown at a wall and a pool of blood on the floor much later on. Just how did this film get a 15 certificate rating in the UK?!
Not silly enough for ya? Wait, it gets better. A female teacher appears to be the clumsiest woman in the world. She slips on some washing powder on the floor in the school's laundry room and then hits her head on the side of one of the washing machines conveniently placing her long hair in...ta-da!...a mangler. This is just the chance that the computer has been waiting for. The mangler crushes her head. Presumably.
Still not silly enough for ya? Wait, it gets better. After the school's electric fence is supposedly de-activated, jock boy virtually jumps up and down on it shouting "it's safe!" to alternative girl until the power is inevitably turned back on. He then falls onto the floor with a strange whimpering sound, a face blacked up with soot and his hair kind of standing on end.
Lance Henrikson's headmaster character is knocked unconscious and we see a piece of electric cable wrapping itself around his body. 10 minutes later he drops from the ceiling as some sort of crap looking Mangler program/human fusion with an electronic voice. He
wants to have a baby with alternative girl but she gets the better of him in an extremely unlikely way which then leads up to a horrible finale for a truly horrible film.
All of the several deaths in this film are incredibly (and very unintentionally) funny and lack any form of suspense whatsoever. I've seen more thrilling episodes of The Golden Girls than this. It was written and directed by Michael Hamilton-Wright who should hang his head in shame. If I was him, I'd quickly change my name. It's not even bad in a good way since the film is quite often tedious. It's one of those unique cinematic outings where you honestly won't believe just how truly terrible it really is unless you've had the incredible misfortune to observe it for yourself first-hand. Avoid like a bad case of the clap.
I paid five pounds for this ex-rental disc and that was exactly five pounds too much. It's been released in the UK by "Third Millenium Multimedia" who've got the bare-faced cheek to describe it as widescreen on the back of the DVD packaging when it's blatantly a full-frame print. I should thank them really since they've given me a perfect excuse as to why I'll be returning it for my five pound note back. To top off that company's piss-take, this is the grainiest DVD that I have ever seen. I shit you not. You'd get far superior quality on an extremely popular ex-rental video from the early 1980's. You get a trailer and a short gallery to go with your 2.0 sound but quite frankly, who gives a shit?
I quote "Based on characters created by Stephen King." I think I feel a lawsuit coming on. There's a part of this film where all of the PC's in a room start flashing "You've been mangled!" in large red capital letters. Yep, I was.