Tromatrons Engaged

There’s a genuinely funny, ridiculous movie in Toxic Avenger Part II, if only it knew when to quit. Embracing the humor of a sixth grader without even once apologizing for it, Toxic Avenger Part II features disembowelment, ninjas, sumo wrestlers, nudity, romance, and whatever other low brow gag the creative team thought up on set. Then, they included it all.

The story goes that Lloyd Kaufman shot some four hours of usable footage for this sequel, and came up with an idea to split this into two movies as a result. At issue is that watching the end product, that behind-the-scenes story makes sense. Melvin Junko (his surname changed in this follow-up to suit the story) narrates much of the jumbled story just to bring some connection to Junko’s trip west.

Toxic Avenger Part II is a better movie than its predecessor in multiple ways

When it works, it works. An opening fight involves KKK members, little people, and commandos challenging Junko for the real estate rights to a home for the blind. It’s done with same sensibility as Blazing Saddles, in which the villain calls for anyone willing to help eliminate the hero. Sight gags, in places, match the Zucker Brothers (Airplane) humor, like Junko shouting, “Banzai” before a fight, and a man appears holding a Bonsai tree.

Yet every successful joke is run into the ground. Toxic Avenger Part II extends dangerously close to the two hour mark and feels as such. Scenes inside the antagonist’s (Apocalypse, Inc) lair, akin to Skeletor or Cobra Commander in the sense of an ‘80s cartoon, exhaust the best material at the outset, then run for another five minutes. It isn’t until the 40-minute mark that Toxie arrives in Japan and the story progresses. That’s a shame.

Toxic Avenger Part II is a better movie than its predecessor in multiple ways, but specifically the tone and humor. With some 20-minutes sliced away, it’s the best thing Troma ever made, but as is, tries too hard and squanders the chance. The surface level anti-corporate stance and anti-pollution message place it directly into the cartoon series that appeared two years later, making it the clear inspiration for this franchise’s overall tenor. It’s fun, but in spurts.

Video

Fantastic work brings this sequel to 4K in startling detail. It’s the color that immediately makes an impression, the saturation incredible and rich. Primaries have a dazzling glow, while the flesh tones keep their integrity.

Sharpness is impeccable, showing the full possible resolution in the film stock. The detail that results is absurd, and a massive improvement from the already strong original Toxic Avenger. Every bit of the putrid gore effects is on display. The seams in Toxie’s makeup show through completely. There’s no lost detail.

An HDR pass nicely accentuates the scenery, adding a pleasing glow during daylight scenes with stable, thick black levels elsewhere. Dimensionality is overall fantastic. Limited damage appears in various frames (vertical scratches usually), which quickly pass.

Audio

There’s nothing remarkable about this DTS-HD stereo track. It’s stable, reasonably clear, and free from distortion. The mild score has little presence in the mix. Stereo effects aren’t a factor.

Extras

An intro by Lloyd Kaufman joins a commentary by Kaufman and Troma editors.

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided to us for review. This has not affected the editorial process. For information on how we handle review material, please visit our about us page to learn more.

The Toxic Avenger Part II
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
3

Movie

Unfortunately overlong, Toxic Avenger Part II’s best gags are buried by scenes that never know when to quit.

Sending
User Review
5 (1 vote)

The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 46 full resolution, uncompressed HD screen shots ripped directly from the Blu-ray:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *