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Review by
Kelly Parks

Python II
PYTHON II (2002)
United Film Organization (UFO)
Rated: Australia: M / USA: R

Filler. Think of it as an ecological niche. The proliferation of channels, especially movie channels, created the need for cheap movies to be on at 3 AM. Supply met demand and the result is a species of film somewhere below “B”. I’m telling you this so you’ll understand why anyone would look at a truly awful film like PYTHON and actually want to sink money into a sequel. Neither of these films will ever be mentioned in the same breath as the words “box office”. But in their own little late-night cable niche, they do what they’re supposed to do: kill time until enough people are watching to make it worthwhile to play the better movies.

PYTHON II was directed by L.A. McConnell (aka Lee A. McConnell, Lee Alan McConnell and Chance Marquez), his first time in the feature film director’s chair. The screenplay came from Jeff Rank (DEEP SHOCK).

If you didn’t see PYTHON and are worried about being able to follow the storyline …well, don’t worry. You’re fine, especially since this movie contains a great many flashbacks to the first movie. Filler within filler.

This time the story takes place in Chechnya, the breakaway Muslim republic within Russia. Another giant, acid spitting snake is on the lose and an American Colonel (Marcus Aurelius: BLADE, TOTAL REALITY, BOA) is put in charge of Russian soldiers who’ve been paid by the American government to capture the monster alive. Colonel Jefferson explains this in exhaustive exposition, beginning with his speech to the soldiers with, “For those of you who don’t know where we are…” So much for what little suspension of disbelief I had left.

The captured snake is loaded on a cargo plane (like in the last movie) which promptly crashes (like in the last movie). This time the plane is brought down by a Chechen stinger missile rather than a storm. A Russian army unit (apparently not in communication with the Russian army unit that helped capture the snake) shows up at the crash site and machine guns all the Chechens, including a defenseless woman who wasn’t there a second ago but shows up just in time to be shot. This is so the Russians can be portrayed as bad guys for killing Chechen terrorists who moments before were laughing about the cargo
plane they shot down.

The snakes (turns out there’s two) are still in their cargo containers, which are hauled back to the Russian base and, of course, opened.

We cut to a young couple apparently running a trucking company here in central Asia. The American husband, Dwight (Dana Ashbrook: RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD II, WAXWORK, TWIN PEAKS [TV], BOA) and his Russian wife, Nadia (Simmone Mackinnon: THE LOST WORLD [TV], DEEP SHOCK) run afoul of a local crime lord but are rescued by American agent Greg Larson (William Zabka: DARK DESCENT, PYTHON). Larson was the small town cop in PYTHON but now he has a career as an intelligence agent. He offers the couple $100,000 to use their truck to drive into Russia and pick something up. For that amount of money (especially in that part of the world) he could have bought a fleet of trucks and had Tajikistan carpeted. No wonder our taxes are so high.

The rest of the movie – of course – takes place in the industrial hallways of the underground (why?) Russian base. That’s just standard operating procedure for movies like this because it’s cheap and because it’s vaguely reminiscent of their ultimate source material: ALIEN.

Which ultimately reminds me of a

Anacondas are the largest snakes in the world and there have been unconfirmed reports that anacondas as big as the snake in this movie (80+ feet in length) actually exist. The largest confirmed specimen was 34 feet long. Anacondas are longer (and beefier) because they live in the water (which helps to support their weight), as opposed to the mostly tree-dwelling pythons. So an Anaconda would have made more sense here, but if you use the actual title of the movie you’re ripping off, people notice.

Endless bad acting and a truly unbelievable (compared to what?) shift of a major character from good to evil make this movie almost unbearably bad. I give it two negative shriek girls.

This review copyright 2003 E.C.McMullen Jr.

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No, Pythons do not have long venemous - type fangs as depicted on the DVD cover. They have no use for them. But - as with the first one - since this is (supposedly) a genetically engineered python (maybe), I'm willing to let it go.

Director Richard Clabaugh admits that "Python suffers from cinematic schizophrenia." and fully explains why at his site:

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