Piranha II: The Spawning (1981) (Blu-ray Review)

Piranha II: The Spawning (1981) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: James Cameron
Starring: Tricia O’Neil, Lance Henriksen, Ricky G. Paull
Rated: R/1:85/1080p/Region A/Number of Discs 1
Available from Scream Factory

While investigating the mysterious death of a diver, scuba instructor Anne Kimbrough (Tricia O’Neil, Are You In The House Alone?) makes a horrific discovery: mutated piranhas, with wings that enable them to fly, are responsible for the death. As the body count rises, Anne desperately tries to convince the manager of the resort to call off the annual fish fry on the beach, but he’s determined to give his guests the ultimate feeding frenzy. This exciting sequel to Joe Dante’s original Piranha also stars Lance Henriksen (Aliens, The Terminator) and is the directorial debut of James Cameron (Avatar, The Terminator, Aliens).

James Cameron in his first film as a director gave the world Piranha Part Two: The Spawning, a film he doesn’t really want to take credit for and with good reason. Now sure there was a lot of behind the scene stuff that got in the way with the film, but take my word on it gang..this is terrible. But one could argue that it’s terrible in an entertaining sort of way. Yes, the man behind Alien, Titanic, and Avatar is the same man who directed this oddball film? I know it’s hard to believe for me too. Sooo yeah, these piranhas can fly! I recall having to deal with flying fish on the original Super Mario Brothers, no idea if that was inspired by this thing or not, but wouldn’t it be cool if it was? It would mean that at least something good came out of this film besides a ridiculous plot and annoying characters. Speaking of annoying characters, the scuba diver and the cop have a kid named Chris. He’s a little overprotective of his mother and in one of the very first scenes seems to want to play around with her a little too closely while she’s all wrapped up (and I can only assume) naked under a single sheet. Anyone else notices this? Was it odd to anyone else? Am I just weird? Anyway, moving along.

Yeah, so the piranha can now fly! Have I brought that up yet? They can apparently live within bodies and away from water for long periods of time as well. In one scene after a body is laying out of one of the victims that the flying piranha already got, one of those piranha spring from the inside of this corpse to attack a nurse! Sure, it may be the only cool scene in the whole film, but it’s soo far over the top you can’t help but respect it even with you are rolling your eyes at it. One nice thing I can say about it is that at least the gore was a lot better this time around than in the original. Everything else here is really even below general B-movie standards but the car-crash nature of it might just be the appeal. Other than that, we have some weird plot that doesn’t make sense, nice gore, nice naked women ever so often, and a pretty okay transfer for the most part. You will notice some soft and slightly out of focus moments in the movie from time to time. Piranha II: The Spawning is an odd film to say the least. But even if you do like it or just find it so bad it’s entertaining, you’ll think this is a solid release none the less.


– NEW 2K Scan From The Original Camera Negative
– NEW Interview With Actor Ricky Paull Goldin
– NEW Interview With Special Effects Artist Brian Wade
– Theatrical Trailer

Quality of Transfer: 83%