The Mangler 2 (Michael Hamilton-Wright, 2002, Canada)

The Mangler 2 is the second entry in the Mangler franchise. Yes, The Mangler is a franchise. Perhaps a testament to the inherent marketability of the Stephen King name (though he does not appear anywhere in the film's credits or on the DVD artwork), The Mangler is a three-film franchise. While other King franchises have done more with less (Children of the Corn), The Mangler is certainly not one of King's strongest stories. Added to this is the fact that the original 1995 Tobe Hooper was not a success by any measure, despite what defenders might say. The Mangler 2 is noteworthy not only for being made but also for having the Lionsgate brand on it.

The Mangler dispenses with the laundry press of the original film and instead updates The Mangler to the Y2K era. Bearing more in common with another King franchise - The Lawnmower Man - than the original film, The Mangler 2 takes place at a private school. The headmaster of the school is none other than Lance Henriksen of Aliens and Pumpkinhead fame. Henriksen is the only actor of note in the film. A female student unleashes a computer virus which eventually takes over the entire security system of the school, ultimately fusing with Henriksen.

The Mangler 2 is by no means a good film, and I imagine even at the time it was dated. But there is something oddly charming in the film's weirdness, and it surprises with moments such as Lance Henriksen, hanging suspended from a ceiling, reciting lyrics to the Spice Girls' "Wannabe." Though some have called The Mangler 2 the worst film to ever be connected to a King property, it deserves a little more respect than that. It is awful but at least not truly contemptible like Creepshow 3



Popular Posts