Killer Crocodile 2 (1990)

Killer Crocodile 2

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Sure he eats everybody, but how can you hate him? Look how happy he is to be back!

Set some unspecified time after the events of the first film, gung-ho New York newspaper reporter, Liza, is sent off to investigate the exact same area of swamp as the previous film. A powerful land developer has claimed that the swamp has been completely cleaned up, and he plans to build a resort at the mouth of the estuary. But Liza and her editor are skeptical of this claim, based on the continuing rumors they keep hearing of radioactive waste still being dumped in the marshy wetlands. Turns out the newspaper sources are right and a bunch of skeevy guys are still out there dumping crap into the water. But Liza isn’t afraid of anything if it means breaking a story, not even if it means having to contend with scummy business men and sketchy criminals, or even getting stranded out in the swamp. What she didn’t count on however, was that the crocodile from the first film left a nest of eggs behind and one of them has hatched, producing yet another giant reptile with a taste for human flesh. But Liza’s not alone in her fight for survival. Joe and Kevin are also back looking for the monster, and are determined to stop it before it eats any more of the numerous morons who keep insisting on needlessly jumping out of their own boats.

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Seriously guys, you look like you’re doing some kind of synchronized diving. What the hell?

Killer Crocodile 2 was filmed at the same time as the first film and I guess the filmmakers were hardcore believers in the phrase “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, cause while there are some changes, it sticks pretty close to the same plot as the first film. People dump stuff into the swamp, someone goes to investigate, the evil dumper tries to sabotage, croc comes to eat them, hero comes in half-way through, boats, blood, more boats and blood, croc goes boom, it ends without there being any consequences for the bad guys…. Okay, scratch my previous statement, there is no “pretty close”, this IS the exact same plot of the first movie. My mistake. Still, there are a couple of subtle differences, though the vast majority of the elements remain exactly the same.

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Exactly how big are you supposed to be, anyway?

For starters, the crocodile is still there and as hokey looking as ever, thanks in part to several minutes worth of reused footage from the first film, and following proper horror movie sequel protocol, he ends up eating about double the number of victims compared to the first film, including a full boatload of singing Catholic schoolboys and one Nun. If you’re wondering what two boatloads of singing schoolboys are doing traveling through the swamp, I have no earthly idea, but they must have tasted good, because damn if the croc doesn’t gobble them down with gusto. Or maybe he just wasn’t a fan of their singing. Anyway, the main difference is, you’re not actually seeing him eat most of these people. The vast majority of the deaths in this film are more implied than outright shown, so instead of seeing the victim in the croc’s mouth, you’re treated to a lot of bubbles of suddenly red water coming up out of the swamp or a bloody nun’s habit. I guess when you’re making a cheap, cash-in sequel, you’ve got to pinch pennies somewhere, as evidenced by the croc and Kevin being briefly replaced by bath toys during their climactic final battle.

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Like, damn, he took out 8 people in one sitting.

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“This’ll look better in post right?”
“Who cares about post? Just flail the rubber squeaky toy, Paolo!”

Another familiar element rearing its ugly head is the return of the terrible dialogue and dubbing. I’m guessing this is another thing the filmmakers did at the same time as the first film, because absolutely none of it has improved from the previous movie. Talking is still obnoxiously stilted, screams feel fake, and there is a particularly bad moment involving some of the cringe-iest flirting you will ever have the displeasure to hear. I don’t really know why I was expecting any improvement, but my wishes were quickly dashed in the first scene when one of the first lines of dialogue uttered was “Without my bathing suit, I feel naked.” I guess I should be thankful that at least the movie didn’t string me along with false hopes for more than 30 seconds.

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As God as my witness, I’ll never give a film the benefit of the doubt again!

Believe it or not, one of the film’s minor improvements is to it’s generalized plot. In the first film, most of the human motivations are left horribly vague, if the movie even bothers to touch on them at all. We know why the environmentalists are there, but on whose behalf, we’re not certain. We know that the local judge is corrupt due to a secret he’s keeping, but that’s not really explained either. And we know who’s dumping the chemicals in the swamp, but we don’t know what he does or who the hell he’s working for. In short, we’re given no answers whatsoever. But in the sequel they at least bothered to flesh things out a little bit more. You’ve got a greedy developer who doesn’t want anyone to know about the illegal dumping going on so he can build a resort and make a bunch of money, and a newspaper reporter is sent in to catch him in his obvious lie. Granted it’s not the most involved explanation, and it’s never clear what the hell the land developer was doing to have accumulated so much damn radioactive waste, but it’s more than the first film bothered with, so kudos to them for that small amount of added effort.

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Millions in land development and they can’t afford a damn stencil for the barrels? Really?

But then, naturally, the movie borks their goodwill, by throwing in some obvious continuity errors. Now, being filmed at the same time as the first movie, one would think the filmmakers would have at least had both scripts handy to prevent things like this, but if you were a betting man, you would have lost that hand. The most obvious example is when Kevin meets back up with Joe, and starts talking about how the crocodile ruined his life, at one point lamenting that the monster “killed all my friends.” Now, I’m not sure if this is the script’s fault, or the dubbers fault, but either way I guess poor Kevin is suffering from some PTSD induced memory loss, because three of his friends were still alive and perfectly fine at the end of the first movie. The photo asshole was alive with him on the boat, and the ladies were safe and sound at Joe’s cabin. Unless Kevin’s line is suggesting that Bob, the poor guy who turned into the crocodile’s late night snack, was his only friend in the world, and if that’s the case then Kevin really needs to get out more.

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Seriously? Dude, unless they threw themselves into a boat propeller to get away from your dull-ass as you all were leaving the swamp, they’re fine. Quit being so damn emo.

Other than that Killer Crocodile 2 is pretty much a rinse and repeat of the last movie. The croc is the same, the acting is the same, the dubbing is the same, the story-line is the same, people are still inexplicably jumping out of boats (it’s just amazing), and our heroes continue to make monumentally stupid decisions. Like, Kevin, buddy, did you really need to use the boat to run over the crocodile at 60 miles per hour and fling you and Liza out into the water, just to try to distract the lizard from eating a couple of people you hadn’t met before? With solid decision making like that, I’m shocked Liza didn’t put her faith in you sooner. The only real differences we get from the previous film is that there is less blood, more boobs, a bit more story exposition and clarity, and that Liza comes across as a far more likable lead than Kevin could ever hope to be. The pacing does drag a bit in the beginning, and the film concludes with a head-shakingly bad series of coincidences, but there’s enough crocodile munching in between the duller parts to stave off any boredom before it has time to start. If you liked the first film, cheesy-as-hell monster movies, or just enjoy cheap Italian rip-off cinema in general, then you could do worse than Killer Crocodile 2.

Killer Crocodile 2 is available on a variety of streaming services, including free on Tubi TV.

It is also available on Bluray, along with the first film, Killer Crocodile.

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Michi

2 thoughts on “Killer Crocodile 2 (1990)

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