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Overall Rating

Awesome: 4.63%
Worth A Look: 5.56%
Average: 12.96%
Pretty Bad: 21.3%
Total Crap55.56%

10 reviews, 48 user ratings

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Urban Legends: The Final Cut
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by Erik Childress

"Sequel Is Better Than Original Yet Still Pretty Bad"
2 stars

We have reached a collective point of Alzheimer’s in this country. Or so most of the advertisers and filmmakers think of us. A long-standing point in Hollywood dictates that the shorter a title, the easier it is for the public to remember and say when making their plans for the evening. It’s a lot simpler to spout out “let’s go see Bats” than it would be to suggest The Unbearable Lightness of Being. But as language became over-complicated in other walks of life (i.e. Shell Shock to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder), the era of the initials came into effect with Terminator 2 becoming T2. From ID4 to MIB to D2: The Mighty Ducks, the initial era was usually reserved for the big blockbuster of each movie season. But now it seems to have become a representation of a lack of total recall, for the opening credits to Urban Legends: Final Cut begin with flashing “UL2” onto the screen before dissolving into the Aliens-like plural treatment of its actual title. Perhaps this lack of memory was something the filmmakers were counting on since the original Urban Legend film was so bad. On the glass is half full side, the sequel is a better film. Unfortunately, it’s not much of an improvement.

The first film dealt with a serial killer that modeled their murders off of the infamous urban legends that we hear so much about. The second film deals with a student who hears a story about the first film and decides to use it as an idea to shoot her thesis project in film school. After all, she has to win the prestigious Hitchcock award awarded to the best student film. Having attended Columbia College in Chicago, I can tell you that any respectable film teacher would have shot down such an idea in seconds. Write what you know. Anyway, she rounds up the best crew possible of all her friends, who apparently have enough time to work on every single one of their friends movies, and they are each soon winding up, one by one, on the cutting room floor. Would someone actually kill to win the big prize someone asks? Hell, for a film contract? Even I might.

It would be customary to discuss individual characters here, but the film makes each one nothing more than targets, so why should anyone want to read about them, let alone see them brought to life? There’s your fresh-faced heroine (who isn’t much of a film director). You’ve got a love interest who kills himself (or does he?) after his film is negatively reviewed. Then his twin brother shows up (or is he?) to help out the heroine. One girl seems to be playing Gina Gershon and another enacts the slutty bad actress cliché. Joseph (“Joey”, it worked for Laurence “Larry” Fishburne) Lawrence actually isn’t bad as a bratty film brat with a cell phone addiction. In all fairness to the young actors, none of them are bad enough to warrant any unnecessary skewering (other than what some of them get in the film). Certainly none of them are as bad as Alicia Witt in the original, ranking with the worst female lead performances in a major film.

Of all the “whodunit” slasher films ever made, this one has to contain the least mysterious mystery of them all. No matter what effort is made to cast shadows amongst the various characters, the face behind the fencing mask has to come down to one of two people, otherwise it becomes a matter of mere coincidence. I had the killer picked out in the film’s trailer, but if you’ve managed to miss every other teenage killer flick, well, it’s still pretty slim pickens. And to go along with the whole memory lapse/stealing ideas motif, even the killer’s motive is stolen directly from the 1988 Dennis Quaid remake of D.O.A. Not to give anything away there, but if the movie companies have their way, you’ll have forgotten about it by the time you finish this review.

With such a half-empty attitude towards the film, how could it possibly be better than the first one? Well, that’s due to a pair of scenes that had me laughing out loud, one in a true, good way and the other in a good, quality kill kinda way. That second way comes in the culmination of the first murder as the victim awakes in a tub of ice with her kidney removed. How she departs is so over-the-top and ridiculous that you can’t help but enjoy it. The other great moment materializes out of a real gun getting mixed up in a mad rush of prop guns, leading four characters to frantically search for the right one, clicking barrels one after another at each other. Now that’s a great scene and it deserved a better movie.

Film school and urban legends are both ripe targets for satire. I’ve always preached that the original should have been a dark comedy about such myths and how they get started. But they chose the conventional stab ‘em and die method and forgot to have any fun with it whatsoever. You can imagine you’re seeing a glimpse into the making of such a garden variety slasher flick as the lead character directs her actors by saying “you stand over there, say your lines, you get attacked and then you scream.” The writers of the new film even manage to throw out their original pluralized concept, as only (maybe) 2 urban legends are reenacted (by my count) until the killer just says the hell with it and uses more traditional methods like bullets and electrocution. The most original thing the screenwriters seem to come up with is the killer’s mask. We’ve seen the hockey mask, the flesh face, the Edward Munch mask and even a bleached out William Shatner covering, but the killer here wears a fencing mask. And even though it seems evident that you can find just about any prop you need for your movie on campus, a fencing class is nowhere to be found. The Scream trilogy satire and subsequent straight parody, Scary Movie, should have put to bed the slasher series, at least for the next 15 years or so until they can resurface like the disaster film a few years back or the public’s memory gives out once and for all.

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originally posted: 09/28/00 14:33:39
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User Comments

11/25/13 Jan Marie It just doesn’t get any better than seeing the gorgeous “Mrs. Anita Pelaez” over at her and 5 stars
4/04/09 Dane Youssef Actually... kind of fun for a sequel to a movie that was a rip-off in the first place. 4 stars
1/12/06 Darren O lacks the novelty of the original, and doesn't live up to the title 2 stars
1/02/06 Wiseman hahahaah oh my god, the first one was ok, but this one is a HORRIFIC PEICE OF Shiat 1 stars
10/24/05 tony poooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo 1 stars
8/04/05 ^podo boring and stupid... 2 stars
5/24/05 E-FUNK Holy shit! This movie is so bad it warrants executions for everyone involved. 1 stars
2/02/04 Rocko *cough* horse shit *cough* 1 stars
11/25/03 Thiago Pretty original way to continue the series. I really enjoyed UL2. 4 stars
11/09/03 Samuel Didn't even compare to the origional...which also sucked!! 3 stars
11/04/03 American Slasher Goddess Not bad, but weaker then the first one. 3 stars
7/25/03 Double G Why did they make a sequel, if they 1st one was so bad. This is torture, don't watch it!!!! 1 stars
7/07/03 Jack Sommersby Arid and just plain boring sequel to the passable original. Good cinematography, though. 1 stars
7/03/03 Gray had some good scenes wasn't helped by racist hummer 2 stars
6/23/03 Hottie I didn't think it was that bad! I thought it was good! 4 stars
4/01/03 y2mckay God how I hated this piece fo shit. Die, Loretta Devine. DIE YOU FAT BITCH! 1 stars
3/02/03 ME A GREAT FILM 5 stars
1/02/03 Chowie WHAT A PIECE OF SHIT! 1 stars
6/02/02 I'm in (L) with a Jedi this was fucking torture 1 stars
4/26/02 Charles Tatum Terrible sequel to a terrible film 1 stars
3/15/02 Christian Oh dear. What happened?The first one was so entertaining 1 stars
11/30/01 Rutt13 one of my beer farts could make a better film, even the girls are ugly. 1 stars
11/17/01 Shane Robert Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is better than the first one & really haves it clever parts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
7/02/01 Jennifer Doran i like chicks 4 stars
4/16/01 LiL Wow, what a piece of shit 1 stars
3/28/01 Rampage Crappy shows like The X-Files are even freakier that any stupid teen horror flick. 1 stars
2/22/01 Jenna Eva Mendes is HOT 4 stars
2/11/01 KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi Doesn't even qualify as hackwork. Shit trying to pass itself off as potpourri. 1 stars
1/14/01 movie chick Don't waste your time on this crappy sequel. 1 stars
12/19/00 Thrillhouse Like JustinR review says, "Who comes up with this shit?" 1 stars
12/06/00 Cristopher Revilla what's with hollywood? they're just releasing shitty sequels from even shittier flicks!!! 1 stars
12/03/00 Stuntman laughably stupid, makes Malcolm in the Middle look like Eerie Indiana 1 stars
12/03/00 Dee Ingold I think it was an awesome movie i want to see it again. 5 stars
11/13/00 Evelyn Four words...MATTHEW DAVIS IS SEXY!!p.s. I liked this movie a lot better than the first one 5 stars
10/09/00 Ground Zero worse than the first 1 stars
10/05/00 Jacques Strap it's like watchingX-Files, but w/o Fox Mulder and Scully. Godawful. 1 stars
10/04/00 JJ It was fun 4 stars
10/04/00 Boy In The Designer Bubble Suckers! You've wasted your lives and money on a piece of dreck. Satan Rules Hollywood!!! 1 stars
10/02/00 PJ Got 6 words for this crap-- This Movie Sucked Ass Shit Stains. By the way Jacinda gets it! 1 stars
10/02/00 KAM Bad, very, very, bad 2 stars
9/30/00 Stuntman GO SEE SCARY MOViE 1 stars
9/26/00 tuna could this movie suck any more? 1 stars
9/25/00 siro why oh why did i waste 8bucks on this, when i could've been at home, masterbating?!? 1 stars
9/25/00 Jason O should've gone to the symphony... 1 stars
9/24/00 Ground Zero whoever came up with that armpit should be dragged out in the street and shot. Awful. 1 stars
9/23/00 Boy In The Designer Bubble If you want a good scare. Buy the Harry Potter books. Hollywood has lost all hope. 1 stars
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  22-Sep-2000 (R)
  DVD: 19-Jul-2005


  28-Sep-2000 (MA)

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