Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Dentist 2

(1998) **1/2




In the sequel that no one asked for, snow globe enthusiast* Corben Bernsen reprises his role as Dr. Caine, the notorious psycho dentist from the first one. After a daring escape from a mental institution, Dr. Caine forges a new identity for himself in the small Midwestern town of Paradise. Determined to overcome his demons, the good doctor starts a new practice, falls in love and briefly leads a life of peace. After being exposed to some poor Midwestern hygiene though, his mad dentist instincts resurface. The threat posed by his girlfriend's ex soon sends him over the edge and a new killing spree ensues.

To his credit, he does manage to make it through his first routine checkup without murdering the patient, offering a glimmer of hope that things could work out. But the second guy is not so lucky... Like the first installment, the closeups of Dr. Caine poking, clamping and drilling around in people's mouths were more than enough to satisfy my twisted horror needs and if Brian Yuzna's goal was to make me never want to set foot in a dentist office again; he did a damn fine job. One scene that still bothers me introduced a game called "Truth or Tooth", which he played with an unsuspecting bank teller.

As a '98 B-movie, Dentist 2 is somewhat passable, even watchable. But it eventually boils down to: does this Bernsen guy make a good psycho? And the answer is - no, not really. He tries too hard and he giggles too much. And the giggling is only a symptom of a much grander problem that I am only just grasping the magnitude of.

I can't in good conscience recommend these Dentist flicks. But I'm pretty sure I'd watch a third one.

*I'mNotMarc's Corben Bernsen research led to the discovery that the actor is an avid snow globe collector. I thought there might be something interesting about that hobby but our extensive research led to nothing. Octopunk felt that snow globe collecting is for unimaginative people who want to collect something but just don't know what. It's a hard point to argue. The most expensive snow globe on Ebay is this Luis Vuitton "rarity" going currently for $480:
For more information on how to collect snow globes visit: http://www.ehow.com/how_17247_collect-snow-globes.html

In Dentist 2, a door-to-door snow globe salesman character is introduced in the beginning. He seems relevant for a while but then he just disappears a third of the way into the movie. What the hell is that about? Lame life imitating lame art? Is that even really a job? Would anyone buy a snow globe from a door-to-door salesman?

12 comments:

Jordan said...

The door-to-door snow globe salesman is somehow incredible. (But I've been up all night.)

I've just discovered this amazing website called everything2 which I flatly refuse to describe, but here are two great essays from there (dealing with the question, "What is a Mortuxenomorph?") (Answer: "A Zombie")

American Society Reflected in Zombie Films

How To Survive Against Zombies

(Welcome back, Summerisle. I was wondering what the hell happened to you. Maybe you had become...A ZOMBIE)

Octopunk said...

"Octopunk felt that snow globe collecting is for unimaginative people who want to collect something but just don't know what."

I did say that, but I'll admit I'm a snob when it comes to collecting things. I saw a snow globe collection at an art gallery that was displaying people's collections of stuff, that was a worthy one.

But it's like...I knew a guy in high school who was really into Marilyn Monroe, but I think he just liked the idea of being really into her more than he actually was really into her.

Jordan said...

I think you just like the idea of being a snob about collecting things more than you actually are a snob about collecting things.

Octopunk said...

Oh God you're right! Clearly I'm a shallow person and nobody should be my friend -- it's a good thing for me I have all this awesome stuff.

Jordan said...

I want to see a LEGO snow-globe (with little white pieces of LEGO drifting around in the water).

Octopunk said...

Unfortunately, building with the Lego water bricks is kind of a pain in the ass.

Hey Summerisle, does anyone in this movie really end up with a mouth full of exacto blades for teeth? And does that make you the victim or the monsta?

JPX said...

Here's a snowglobe for ya!

Summerisle said...

Yeah, one woman does get the razor blade treatment and she is both the victim AND the monster!

Jordan said...

Summerisle,

That sounds like the description of the treatment in the dentist's "treatment catalog" (if there was such a thing):

RAZOR BLADE TREATMENT ($769.95)

"Be both the victim AND the monster!"

Octopunk said...

Hmmm. That's a pretty good price for a Razor Blade Treatment. I might have to think about that...it sure will make Christmas more intersting.

Summerisle said...

That would be good slogan for the back of Horrorthon '07's t-shirt!

Or it could say "I was there!" and show a picture of a guy sitting on the couch...

JPX said...

"Or it could say "I was there!" and show a picture of a guy sitting on the couch..."

I love it!