Lawnmower Man 2: Jobe's War

on January 12, 1996 by Christine James
   The 1992 SF thriller "The Lawnmower Man" was an intriguing concept that ultimately let audiences down with uninspired scripting. It told the story of a scientist whose virtual reality experiments turned his neighbor's mentally deficient groundskeeper into a power-mad megalomaniac genius. This sequel, "Lawnmower Man 2: Beyond Cyberspace," opens with snippets of the original's final climactic scenes--but the fragmented, incoherent presentation of these flashbacks is very confusing, even to those who have seen the first movie. It has been four years, after all, and it wasn't that memorable to begin with.
   The sequel's filmmakers frequently draw from events in the first film but exert little effort to explain anything that previously transpired, making "Beyond Cyberspace's" plot bewildering from the onset. Add to that a heinously cliche-ridden, logic-defying script, and the fact that writer/director Farhad Mann decides to make protagonists of a gang of four unappealingly sassy, ragamuffin teens and their scruffy dog, and you have the formula for an unwatchably stupid movie. The comedic talents of Matt Frewer ("National Lampoon's Senior Trip") are sorely underused, and all the other characters are completely unsalvageable in their total lack of realism.    Starring Patrick Bergen, Matt Frewer and Austin O'Brien. Directed and written by Farhad Mann. Produced by Edward Simons and Keith Fox. A New Line release. SF/thriller. Rated PG-13 for SF action/violence and brief language. Running time: 90 min.
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