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Review Piranha II: The Spawning (1982): A must watch for horror fans!

genre: horror, science fiction, thriller

When coming across this title, you will probably notice two things. First, the low rating on many film review sites. Second, the director of Piranha II is James Cameron.

At this point, you might be thinking, is it even possible for James Cameron to make a bad film? One could argue about that. The one thing James Cameron always managed to do is to deliver you a fun viewing experience despite flaws in story telling. In this case, you aren't even getting James Cameron unleashed. For a while, he had disowned Piranha II as his directorial debut but has now reclaimed it. Apparently, writer / director / producer Ovidio G. Assonitis had hijacked the footage shot by Cameron. Not only did he cut some footage, he also edited the film in a way where there was an emphasis on boobies. Nothing wrong with that, but tonally James Cameron clearly was going for a more serious film and Ovidio undermined his vision. There is a director's cut out there on Laserdisc and VHS only. A real shame, since I really want to know what the difference is.

Piranha II does have some pacing issues. And with the nudity displayed, it does give the film a cheap feel. Despite this, the horror elements are solid. Even with the bizarre and weird premise, these are what provided the most fun. Piranha obviously have the reputation to be very deadly. This has largely been debunked because most of the species aren't that bad. But these, they definitely aren't to be messed with. Even worse, they proactively are on the hunt to devour human flesh. The entire cast, including Lance Henriksen, take events super seriously and is what will draw you into them as well. 

Overall, Piranha II: The Spawning is a lot of fun. Just the audacity of these killer fish to take out human food is something to be witnessed!

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