The Lost Boys. Love it or hate it, you can’t deny that it stands out among the teen vampire movies in the last twenty or thirty years. People remember it, even if not that fondly. I happen to be a huge fan of The Lost Boys, for a few reasons. I mean, The Coreys, Kiefer Sutherland, Diane Wiest, not to mention Alex Winter (of Bill & Ted fame). Plus the very young and incredibly gorgeous Jami Gertz. I even used to live near Santa Cruz, CA where much of The Lost Boys was filmed. It was one of those horror movies that works perfectly as a stand-alone feature. It was great, but it was also enough. There was absolutely no need for a sequel of any kind whatsoever.
So, here I am reviewing The Lost Boys II: The Tribe, one of two sequels to the 1987 original.
Let’s begin with what The Lost Boys II: The Tribe gets right (sort of):
One: This movie reunites “the Coreys” (Haim/Feldman), which is awesome.
Two: They cast a Sutherland to play the lead vampire in the story.
So, what did they get wrong?
One: This movie reunited “the Coreys” (Haim/Feldman), which is awful.
Two: The Sutherland they cast to play the lead vampire in the story wasn’t Kiefer, but rather Angus Sutherland, who is actually Kiefer’s half-brother. And a horrible actor.
Three: No one has ever heard of the rock band Aiden.
Not to mention everything else.
The film opens with a bunch of surfers hopping the gate of some nameless rich guy’s property in order to surf off of his beach. Because there ain’t no surf party like a trespassing on a rich guy’s beach surf party. Now, the rich guy in question does end up being played by Tom Savini, which is a nice little nod to horror fans. But that’s all it is. Savini didn’t do any make up work for this or any other Lost Boys film. It’s almost as though the filmmakers said “We need a horror guy to cameo so the horror fans will see this movie totally has street cred. Get that guy who did the make up for Dawn of the Dead, I’m sure he’ll work cheap. No, no, don’t get him to do the make up. Just get him to show up and then die.”
Anyway, the surfers are vampires and things don’t end well for Savini. But I don’t think things ever end well for Savini when he’s in one of these movies.
We then meet the real stars of the film, Chris and Nicole Emerson, siblings whose parents have recently died in a car accident and who are looking to build a new life in a surf town that doesn’t actually exist in real life. This is where the fans of the original film sit up and go “Emerson?” because that was the last name of Michael and Sam, the protagonists of the original. Are these two the children of Sam? Or Michael? Maybe it’s just a coincidence. Hell if I know, since they never explain why they share a last name with the main characters of the previous film. No explanation whatsoever. They rent a dilapidated house from their aunt, which sort of rules out Sam or Michael playing the role of daddy dearest, but there’s no further explanation as to who any of these people are.
Except that Chris turns out to be some sort of super awesome surf pro who was banned from the sport for, I don’t know, punching a guy or something? They never really explain that either. All we know is he doesn’t surf anymore, even though people come up to him all the time and say things like “You’re the best ever!” but he doesn’t want to hear any of that. All he wants is a job as a surfboard shaper. The proprietor of the local surf shop tells him he needs to go ask the Frog Brothers (yes, those Frog Brothers). Chris and Nicole go to visit the Frog Brothers at their rundown trailer in the middle of nowhere (what could possibly go wrong?), only to find nobody’s home. They leave a note telling whoever the hell the Frog Brothers are where to find them and leave.
Back at Casa De Emerson, Nicole decides to take a shower while Chris opts to sit on the beach and stare at the sunset while lost in thought (I like to imagine he’s thinking “Why? Why did I have to punch that guy and get banned from surfing forever?”). Then a guy that the audience will recognize as one of the vampire surfers from the film’s opening, and no one will recognize as Kiefer Sutherland’s half-brother, appears next to him like a ninja or a, I don’t know, vampire or something. Chris recognizes him as Shane Powers, the world’s greatest surfer, who also walked away from the surfing biz for mysterious reasons (probably the whole vampire thing). Shane recognizes Chris as the surfer who punched that guy that one time and they share a little pity party before Shane invites Chris to his awesome beach house for a surf party later that night.
Chris tells his sister about the party, but says he doesn’t think they should go, as he has a gut feeling that it will all end poorly (which, coincidentally, is the same gut feeling I had before watching this movie), but when their aunt comes in with a copy of The Goonies on DVD and a bag of Dunkin’ Donuts, they decide a vampire surf party is a better idea and get the hell out of there.
The Emerson siblings arrive at the party, which turns out to be less a party and more a gathering of bimbos and douchebags, only some of whom are vampires. Chris gets seduced by a woman claiming to be a surfer groupie (do these women exist?) and Nicole gets seduced by Shane Powers: Vampire Surfer. After he performs a super cool vampire magic trick involving a bringing a dead rose back to life, Shane has Nicole drink a mysterious red liquid out of the sort of flask that only a date rapist owns and the two of them take off on his motorcycle.
This is all in the first fifteen minutes of the film, by the way.
It turns out the mysterious red liquid in the date rape flask is actually blood and now Nicole is turning into one of the undead. Edgar Frog shows up out of nowhere to alert the Emerson’s to this fact, though neither of them believe him (because it’s Corey Feldman and he lives in a trailer), until the surfer groupie arrives and tries to make a meal out of Chris.
The whole movie goes downhill (yes, it all gets worse) from here.
This movie is so bad that I’m literally having a hard time listing all the things wrong with it. The acting is horrible, but even if the acting was good, the dialogue is awful anyway. Angus Sutherland tries so hard to be as cool as Kiefer was in the first film, but it just ends up hilariously bad. And the promised on screen reunion of The Coreys turns out to be a two minute scene during the credits. I mean, it doesn’t even have the other Frog Brother in it until the same two minute over-the-credits scene.
As a fan of the original Lost Boys, I have no other choice but to take this film as an insult, and after the writing of this review, I will forever attempt to forget it ever happened. I’m serious, please do not ever mention this film to me. It never existed.