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Highlander 2

Posted by admin | Posted in Movies | Posted on 22-09-2010


Theatrically released in 1991 as Highlander II: The Quickening, this sequel was later reedited and gained a small but loyal following (prompting a spinoff TV series), but at the time of its release critic Roger Ebert called it “the most hilariously incomprehensible movie … almost awesome in its badness.” In other words, you might find some guilty pleasure in this chaotic sequel to 1986’s Highlander, in which Christopher Lambert reprises his role as Connor MacLeod, a member… More >>

Highlander 2

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Comments (5)

I had waited a long time, years, for a sequel to Highlander to come it. Sitting in the theater with my friends rather than catching the season premier of Star Trek as I recall, we could hardly wait for the show to start. The place was packed, and as the movie progressed, we all remained hopeful, despite the fact it was not good at all. Unfortunately the movie sunk deeper and deeper into a cesspool of stupid plot ideas, and stupider characters. Finally, as we endured the lines, “Remember Highlander, remember, the planet Zeist” someone in the audience started laughing, and soon the whole audience erupted in laughter, and from that point on, jokes were constantly made as everyone laughed at the film, so in the long run, I guess we had a good time, despite being subjected to what was quite possibly the WORST sequel ever to a great movie.

Along with rewriting the original Highlander movie with the stupid planet “Zeist” idea, it felt as if a couple hyper teens had come up with the plot after staying up way too late eating candy and drinking soda. I could imagine this conversation: Kid #1 “Wasn’t it cool when the Kirgan in Highlander stuck out his tongue to the nuns?” Kid #2 replies “Yeah, that was awesome, why don’t we make TWO characters who stick out their tongues all the time now! And even better, lets have them ride flying skateboards!” Kid #1 “Awesome dude! And remember how cool and dark Batman was? Lets see if they want to sell us parts of their set, and we can have it dark most of the time with steam rising and everything” Kid #2 “Rock on!”

I could go on and on, but what’s the point? This movie stunk, the plot stunk, the characters stunk, and the scenery stunk, but the fact that it was the sequel to such a GREAT movie makes it even more disappointing.
Rating: 1 / 5

Highlander II: The Quickening 1991/90min/R **
Something went wrong here in Highlander II: The Quickening Highlander wasn’t really considered a classic by all critics but to me it was. We had a 16th century warrior become immortal in 1586 and now 400 years later he finally defeats Kurgen and clames the prize of becoming mortal in 1986. Now we go into the future of 2024 where the Earth is now covered by a Sheild (which was created in 1999) due to what happened to The Ozone Layer breakdown. When Connor MacCloud was watching the Opera (very well done) he flashsback to a place called Planet Zeist??? Now just wait a minute is this film saying there aliens??? Now that just dosen’t make any sense at all. The only reason why i give it 2 stars was some decent performances,and somes good effects. Otherwise the story and the plot are absoutely ludricous and stupid.
Highlander II: The Renegade Version 109min R ***1/2
After hearing some good reviews about the Renegade version i decided to check it out. When i watched boy man this film was pretty darn good it clears things up. Instead of The Planet Zeist
now its refered to as A Very Long Time Ago (sorta of what Stars Wars would start out of). So my guess is that there from the past in alternate time period instead of another planet. Now that makes sense. I also noticed with in the film some dialouges have been cut out of the Quickening version and added new scenes to it. Some of the sheilds FX were redone now there more like orange looking rather than purple in The Quickening. CGI effects were used as well like the new computer screen. Some of the scenes have been restored to the correct position like the 1999 launch of the Sheild, and a pretty good scene were Macloud visits Brenda while she is dying and she’s one of the reasons why he built the sheild in the first place. Some other scenes added like where it shows Alan and Connor discussing about the radiation above the sheild is normal, and giving him the coordinates to get above the sheild. They ended up doing so and its true the Ozone Layer has repaired itself and the sheild has to come down. When the movie was almost over Connor immediately destroys the sheild and The Earth is no longer covered by the Sheild any longer.
I didn’t really completely list the other scenes but i’m sure you’ll understand them better and for 19 minutes of additional footage that’s pretty good for a film that went wrong. Plus it explains more about what Connor and Ramiez are, Why Connor built the sheild, and why the sheild had to come down.
The DVD is of good quality i just wish that it was anamorphic instead of Letterboxed but hey its not bad i give it a 4. The Dolby Digital 5.1 (AC-3) is pretty decent though it sometimes is to low pitched in the explosions but hey its all good its a 4 as well. The Featurette is pretty good (but note its actually 17mins and 57sec. long not 22min like it said), and the still photos are a bit of a bore they go by fast so i would press Slow on your remote to look at them. The movie itself still won’t live up to the original because it somehow doesn’t click on me that well but overall skip the Quickening and get The Renegade Version now you won’t regert it.
Rating: 4 / 5

At least H2 was consistent: The worst scripting, worst directing, worst acting, worst casting, worst editing and worst everything else I’ve ever seen in a movie. It’s the George Bush of movies.

What’s worse is that they took one of the best premises around, the HIGHLANDER concept, and so messed and muddled it. In my book this mucked-up monster has replaced BATTLEFIELD EARTH as the most incomprehensible waste of money in cinematic history. (Whew. I feel better. Not much though; but the bad mental taste is somewhat exorcised.)
Rating: 1 / 5

My what a confusing film this is! What happened to the concept of the valliant poet warrior introduced in ‘Highlander’ and why, or better put how has Ramirez returned, head intact? Even worse, what’s all this silliness about the alien nature of the Immortals and their home planet Ziest? ABSURD! (I haven’t even mentioned that the original film didn’t leave an opening for a sequel. MacLeod was the last Immortal left and the prophecy was fulfilled. Well, so much for plot accuracy).

There’s an important lesson to be learned here. That lesson being that in the topsy turvy realm of Highlander sequels don’t expect any consistency in storyline from one film to the next, The more you try and make sense of things the less you’ll enjoy the movie. Just be happy that Christopher Lambert agreed to reprise his role as Connor MacLeod and be done with it. (Riddle: When is a sequel not really a sequel? Answer: When it’s a Highlander movie).

For completist only and even the most hardcore fan has a tough time sitting through this mess.
Rating: 2 / 5

After the huge cult success the original film “Highlander” enjoyed since it’s release in 1986, it was merely a matter of time before Hollywood would deliver another adventure featuring everyone’s favorite Scottish Immortal, Connor MacLeod. Even though many enjoyed the first film, the hardcore fans felt that a sequel was pointless since it appeared that Connor had gained the ‘Prize’ after defeating Kurgan. Though in my opinion how they knew the difference between Connor receiving the ‘Prize’ or just another Quickening is beyond me. I felt that a sequel to “Highlander” would be fine, as long as it could equal or surpass the original film. In 1991, “Highlander 2: The Quickening” was released to theaters and fans of the original could hardly wait to see this movie, yes even the nay-sayers were excited. How could they not be, I mean, with the return of Christopher Lambert as Connor MacLeod, Sean Connery as Ramirez, and adding Michael Ironside as a new villanous Immortal named General Katana, plus “Highlander” director Russell Mulcahy helming once again, what could possibly go wrong? Sadly, the answer would be, a lot. The original film as covered in previous reviews by other viewers, was a slap in the face to fans of the original film, and even to the cast and crew. Apparently, the movie studio became too involved in the filmmaking process, leaving audiences with a terrible movie, with a horrible story, and shoddy special effects. In the original theatrical release of “Highlander 2: The Quickening”, the Immortals are said to be from a planet called Zeist, and they fled their homeplanet after a civil war erupted and came to Earth to prosper. This revelation completely alienated most of the ‘Highlander’ fans, and the ones that weren’t alienated probably aren’t true fans. In 1997, director Russell Mulcahy returned once again to the ‘Highlander’ world, editing out any references to the planet Zeist or having the Immortals be aliens. Upon completion of this newly cut version Russell released “Highlander 2: The Renegade Version”, a more entertaining film than the original version of “Highlander 2”, yet still the continuity was messed up. Then once more in 2004, Russell Mulcahy returned one more time to “Highlander 2” and gave all of the special effects an upgrade that they were sorely lacking, and re-edited some of the scenes again, yet sadly, this film still does not flow with the rest of the films in the ‘Highlander’ series. Now that I have brought you all up to speed regarding the changes made to this film through various editions, I will fill you in on the basic story for this latest ‘special edition’ of “Highlander 2: The Quickening”.

“Highlander 2: The Quickening” takes place in the year 2024, and Connor MacLeod is living life as a normal man, since it seems the ‘Game’ is now complete and there are no more Immortals to vanquish, he has been allowed to grow old naturally. In the time that has passed since the end of “Highlander”, Connor has become somewhat of an environmentalist and has created a force shield that will protect us from the sun’s harmful rays, because of the complete destruction of the ozone layer. However, Connor is no longer in control of his company, and a new evil organization is running the shield. Though he created the shield for good, it never lets any sunlight in, not even filtered light, so the world has become a bleak place, and the people are desperate and filled with hatred. But a team of scientists, or eco-terrorists in this case, believe that the ozone layer has healed itself and that there is no longer any need for the force shield, and seeks to destroy it, in hopes of bringing back the sunlight and hope to the people. At the same time this is occurring an Immortal has been sent from the past to face Connor MacLeod and take away the coveted ‘Prize’. As Connor fights to ‘keep his head’ and the ‘Prize’, he also attempts to help the leader of the scientists (Virginia Madsen) disable the force shield he created. But the evil Immortal, General Katana (Michael Ironside), doesn’t care about anything more than taking Connor’s head, and claiming the ‘Prize’. To survive, Connor must call on an old friend to aid him in this time of need, however as the saying goes,”In the end, there can be only one.”

When I first watched this sequel I saw the original theatrical release, not knowing that on DVD the ‘Renegade Director’s Cut’ had been released. So, initially I hated this movie, because I thought it destroyed the mythology of the Immortals by taking an easy way out and having them be aliens, instead of just a mysterious race of humans. But then I saw the ‘Renegade Director’s Cut’, and I was somewhat happier, though still the continuity is screwed up when viewed in line with the original “Highlander” and then the other 2 sequels, “Highlander: The Final Dimension” and “Highlander: Endgame”. Even though the ‘Renegade Version’ is better, and the special effects and some other scenes have been fixed for this new special edition, “Highlander 2: The Quickening” is still a troublesome follow-up that never fully fits into the ‘Highlander’ series. Though, if viewed as a standalone, almost alternate reality ‘Highlander’ universe, then the film could be enjoyable, but that’s too much hassle. Overall, it’s an average standalone movie which is why I gave it 3 stars, but when viewed in line with the rest of the series, it is really only worth 1 or 2.

“Highlander 2: The Quickening” is rated R for violence, language, and brief sexuality.
Rating: 3 / 5

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