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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Movie Review - Class of Nuke 'Em High 2: Subhumanoid Meltdown

Class of Nuke 'Em High 2: Subhumanoid Meltdown 1/10

Troma Pictures has made some pretty great movies The Toxic Avenger, Sgt Kabukiman NYPD, Tromeo and Juliet, Cannibal The Musical and others. But watching Troma movies is like trolling through YouTube late at night, click on video after video until you end up in the dark recesses of YouTube watching those weird self-made home movies of upside down mouth puppetry or rats running up your toilet bowl or the ever popular "YouTube" drama. Whatever that is.

The Best thing about Troma is that they aren't afraid to make the worst movies ever conceived. Seriously, The Toxic Avenger? Class Of Nukem High?  This is what independent filmmaking is all about. Troma has a niche and they have filled it with every conceivable type of movie that they possibly could. Taking advantage of the popularity of the horror/comedy genre that became popular in the Eighties and has since pretty much fizzled out.

Class Of Nuke 'Em High 2 is a sequel. But, really it's not. The only thing it has in common with the first film is that the movie has been set in a college Tromaville Institute of Technology, which was built inside Tromaville's new nuclear reactor. Funded by the Nukamama Corporation to atone for its actions from the first film (the reactor leaked into the water supply, causing the schools population to become violent criminals).

The idea behind the film is that Professor Holt (Lisa Gaye) has created a race of people "subhumanoids" that are devoid of emotions and have been created to perform menial tasks (cooking, cleaning, mail delivery etc) when Roger Smith (Brick Bronsky) meets a subhumanoid, Victoria (Leesa Rowland) and falls in love.

The whole thing is awful. Roger Smith is a report for the school newspaper that stumbles across these subhumanoid experiments, from there, he breaks the story wide open, but no one cares. Until an accident happens, where the scientists lose a cooler full of radioactive material, which a squirrel finds and from there, it turns into a cheap Godzilla rip off.

This movie is the definition of gross. But that's Troma's charm. As disgusting as it may be, Troma can make even the worst films watchable. Not just for the TNA or face melting make out sessions. They know these movies are bad. Even the title credit sequence looks like it was a made for public access television graphic. Even the search lights that are supposed to be swaying in the background don't work properly. Everything about the production of a Troma film is shown right at the beginning.

It's not their best effort. Class Of Nuke 'Em High 2 could have been better. It seems that the whole movie was kind of a throwaway. Like they really didn't have a plot and it was just a spontaneous movie shoot of a bad Godzilla plot. They didn't even attempt to make the helicopter that's supposed to lure the giant Squirrel away, real.

It's companies like Troma that keep this genre alive out of sheer force of will. Nobody seems to want to take the chance to make these Z-movies (also known as schocksploitation). More filmmakers need to take chances like this. Yes, there is YouTube and access to great filmmaking tools, but what makes these movies special, is the fact that Troma goes out and just makes these movies without worrying about impressing a studio or worrying who their audience may or may not be.

Class of Nuke 'Em High 2 is awful, it probably shouldn't even garner a rating, but it's one of those movies that you throw on, on a Friday night or during the summer to bring back those memories of staying up late during your teenage years, eating pizza rolls and drinking 2 litre Pepsi.

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