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3/22/12

TEEN WOLF TOO - REVIEW


There is an irony about Teen Wolf Too that, if intentional, is pretty tragically clever in its own way. I mean the film is essentially about how everyone expects Jason Bateman to become the wolf and live up to Michael J. Fox but due to him... not being Michael J. Fox it proves more difficult to accept than it should.

Teen Wolf Too is basically Teen Wolf. You've got a sporting event our hero needs to win NOT as the wolf to redeem himself in the end, you've got a stern principal (dean, whatever), you've got a bitch bimbo, a bully, goofy best friends, a sweet father figure, the red eyes scene, the hairy hands scene, the transformation scene.... it's the same movie! But Teen Wolf Too is to Teen Wolf what, say, Big Top Pee-Wee was to Pee-Wee's Big Adventure. The sequel lacks something that made the original film that little bit more enjoyable. It's not bad, some stinker lines aside it's not bad, just... it lacks something.

For one thing it takes some time to get going, we're introduced to Jason Bateman's Todd Howard and for a while the film is just him being forced to go through the motions of the first film. Todd looks a bit bored and frankly, I was also. Then he finally turns into the wolf and it all picks up from there. Sadly, this time the transformation isn't so much built-up as a big deal but rather it kind of happens out of nowhere. If they were going to copy/paste the original film, why not remake that movie's iconic scene? I should also point out that, although it gets more entertaining throughout, the first half hour really isn't that funny at all. Things take place and we sit there quietly revisiting the original film in our minds.

This sequel feels much less colourful than its predecessor. It's not as entertaining, Bateman lacks Fox's charisma and the whole film fails to capture a certain cute charm that made Teen Wolf hard to resist. Like I said, though, after the initial so-so half hour it's all uphill from there. Cue a couple of fun montages to the awesome 80's sounds of Oingo Boingo, a spontaneously choreographed (Bollywood-style even) random musical scene, several funny lines here and there and a boxing match which, although we all know how it ends, is pretty fun. There's also a neat mini-twist involving one of Todd's teachers. One does wish they had done a bit more with that but it worked and I must admit it was a nice touch I did not expect.

On the whole, you could do a lot worse than Teen Wolf Too: it's a harmless enough, enjoyable romp. It fails to match the original on most levels but it's not bad. Hell, it's worth watching if only for John Astin's OTT deliveries: this is some John Lithgow-style shit right there. Love it.

Give it a go. Take it for what it is. If you don't compare it to the original it's an ok teen movie.

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