Cower in fear, mortals! The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra may have been smashed to bits in the last movie, but now he returns! Again!
And this time instead of all-American B-movies, the spoofery is aimed at those jungle adventure/"lost world" movies. "The Lost Skeleton Returns Again" brings back everyone (and I do mean everyone) from the previous movie, and while it's not as hilarious as the first movie, it's still a fun little parody with flying skulls, monsters and lots of science.
Military man Pappin (Frank Dietz) arrives at the house of Betty Armstrong (Fay Masterson), only to find out that her husband has been missing in the jungles of the Amazon for two years. So Betty (in full Crocker regalia) and Pappin head off to South America to find Paul (Larry Blamire) who is now an embittered drunk. But he agrees to help find Geranium 90, a vital... rock that can only be found deep in the jungle.
At the same time, Kro-Bar (Andrew Parks) and Lattis (Susan McConnell) have returned to Earth, since their danger detector alerted them to... Betty and Paul being in danger. So they pose as humans and join a crooked expedition that also wants Geranium 90. And Peter Fleming (Brian Howe) finds a mysterious skull amongst his late brother's belongings, and it compels him to go to South America so it can regain its body by using a magical idol.
As the two groups move through the jungle, towards the Valley of the Monsters (no, this doesn't really alarm them), they must fight their way through the deadly prehistoric flora and fauna. And finally they must encounter the Cantaloupe People, and the monster that hides their ancient idol... whose name escapes me.
"The Lost Skeleton Returns Again" isn't QUITE as funny as the movie that precedes it, mainly because you know what to expect -- B-movie monster suits, stilted dialogue, "jungles" that look suspiciously like California, inserted animal footage, characters who talk vaguely about "science," and strange little dances.
So of course, there's lot of spoofy material (a rubber snake that leaps and wrestles with Jungle Brad!) and silly dialogue ("The jungle gets into your blood and builds tiny little houses of pain, and you better not be there when the rent's due!"). And while the titular skeleton is a slightly less imposing figure than before ("I have no HANDS!") he still rules every scene he's in, especially when he goes randomly zooming around the jungle.
And pretty much all of the actors return, although some play the twins of the first movie's characters. Masterson is almost scary as the 50s housewife who smilingly trots through the jungle with a picnic basket, while Blamire gets to channel a truckload of hilariously over-the-top wangst (and constantly reminding people that he's bitter!). McConnell and Parks are particularly funny when they pretend to be human, and Alison Martin is fun as the queen of the Cantaloupe people, who is confronted with the magic of double negatives!
"The Lost Skeleton Returns Again" is a solid sequel to... well, the movie that the Lost Skeleton is returning from. It's full of science... and military men... and rocks.