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'Quarantine 2: Terminal' Movie Review

About.com Rating 3 Star Rating

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'Quarantine 2: Terminal' movie poster.
© Destination Films/Samuel Goldwyn
As a general rule, sequels to remakes are not good ideas (The Hills Have Eyes 2 anyone?), but can Quarantine 2 buck the trend?

The Plot

Quarantine 2 picks up as the events in Quarantine play out: a news crew trapped in a Los Angeles apartment building fend off people suffering from a highly contagious virus that turns them into violent, raving madmen. Meanwhile, across town at LAX, passengers are boarding a Trans Sky Airways flight, but one of them has unknowingly contracted the mysterious ailment, and when it becomes apparent in midair that something on board isn't quite kosher, the plane is forced to emergency land in Las Vegas.

Under the reluctant command of flight attendant Jenny (Mercedes Masohn), the group heads off the plane and into an unmanned terminal, but the infected follow them, and apparently so do the authorities. Before they know it, the passengers are quarantined inside the building by government agents seeking to keep the virus from escaping...again.

The End Result

Bre Blair in 'Quarantine 2: Terminal'.

Bre Blair in 'Quarantine 2: Terminal'.

© Destination Films/Sony
Fair or not, direct-to-video releases have decidedly lowered expectations, and any level of competency is amplified in comparison to the dreck that lines the video store shelves. That said, Quarantine 2 is an above-average DTV film -- and let's be clear: although it's receiving a nominal theatrical release, it has all the earmarks of a DTV film -- one that is good for a few quality scares, some solid makeup effects and a cast that sells the outrageous material with admirable dexterity.

While Quarantine was told through a first-person point-of-view, the sequel opts for traditional third-person storytelling, but apart from that difference, Quarantine 2 is largely a retread of the first film. The airplane setting has promise, but unlike the zombie film Flight of the Living Dead, there's little actual action on the plane. Most of the movie takes place in the airport, which could be unique if it weren't set in the bowels of the terminal -- basically one big industrialized room that could be any sort of warehouse or factory. The setting does little for the film other than serve as an enclosed space in which the protagonists can, like the first film, become "quarantined."

The plot thus plays out familiarly: one person is infected, the virus spreads, the infected people attack, they're all quarantined, authorities come in to investigate (not a good idea), people try to escape, yadda yadda. While you wouldn't want the filmmakers to force a first-person POV format where it doesn't fit, something along that level of innovation (granted, it's much less innovative than it once was) could've helped freshen up the pedestrian script.

John Pogue, who has to this point made his name as the writer of Ghost Ship, The Skulls, U.S. Marshalls and (gulp) Rollerball, acts as freshman director here and does a competent job, although he relies on some unnecessary fast-motion effects that border on Benny Hill at times. Still, he manages to deliver a few jumps and some eerie tension, particularly in the surprisingly emotional climax.

The Skinny

  • Acting: C+ (Solid upper-tier SyFy-level stuff.)
  • Direction: C (Uneven but effective in spots.)
  • Script: C (A retread of the first film.)
  • Gore/Effects: B- (A couple of nice gore scenes to keep things lively.)
  • Overall: C+ (Fast-paced with infectious scares, but certainly a notch below the first movie.)

Quarantine 2: Terminal is directed by John Pogue and is rated R by the MPAA for bloody horror violence, terror, language and brief sexual content. Theatrical release date: June 17, 2011 by Samuel Goldwyn Film. DVD release date TBD.

Disclosure: The distributor provided free access to this movie for review purposes. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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