Gremlins 2: The New Batch

Gremlins 2: The New Batch ★★★★★

In 1968, Joe Dante started his career directing a 7 hour assembling of B-movies into one epic monster extravaganza called The Movie Orgy . A couple of decades later he put every chip he gained after a high successful 80s into making a movie that should by all rights be called "The Movie Orgy" like it was the biggest most expensive studio blockbuster of 1990 and released it into unsuspected multiplexes. He never fully left movie jail after that despite being a very good pal of Steven Spielberg and it was all worth it. Gremlins 2 might not be the greatest movie ever made, but it is the most movie ever made and that is what Joe Dante was after.

The most beautiful monument for anarchy. The real human villain isn't the Trump/Turner tycoon, but Piccardo's executive with his obsession with order (at some point he says something like "whatever they are, they must respect the chain of command" which is the least Gremlins 2 line any character could possible come out with). Uncheckered capitalism bring us monstrous things like a colorized Casablanca with a happy ending, but at the very least it helps releasing all those deep urges, on Gremlins 2 grand design there's just nothing worse than a cop-mentality. This movie is all but releasing them all free and welcomes anyone willing to help. The form is a fee for all, every idea a new scene, every shot three new designs. The cast is wonderful. Dante cartoon instincts perfect applied. I love that he solved "what to do with Gitzmo" question by torturing the little Spielberg muppet for 3/4 of the running time with sadistic relish. And of course a good natured because that's what's so fascinating about Gremlins 2, it is mean and nasty and it hates the machine and screams against it, but it somehow the system perfected too, the well designed machine Clamp Tower wished it was.

I don't know what makes me sadder: how Tony Randall's civilization speech sounds 30 years later nostalgic (sorry Brain Gremlin we wish we had those things too) or that John Glover performance, one of the most joyful comic turns in all movies, is now 30% less fun.

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