Zach Galligan, Deborah Foreman, Miles O'Keefe, Michelle Johnson. Waxwork (1988/97 min.) sets the scene inside a wax museum at midnight where teenagers viewing the figurines get sucked into the exhibits. In Waxwork II (1992/104 min.), Mark and Sarah, who survived that nightmare, travel back in time to find the evidence she needs to prove her innocence from a murderous crime that a dismembered hand from the wax museum committed. Color/R/fullscreen.
The main draw of these low-budget horror pictures is their unabashed affection for the great horror movies of the past. In Waxwork
, Zach Galligan and his teen friends investigate a wax museum, where they are menaced by the re-animated tableaux. It's about as energetic as a wax dummy. The sequel is livelier, with Galligan now passing through a time portal that transports him to various classic film scenarios: Frankenstein
, Dawn of the Dead
, and, briefly and amusingly, Nosferatu
(that's Drew Barrymore as one of the virgins cowering in bed). But why no parody of Vincent Price in House of Wax
? It goes on too long, but there are weird celebrity guest stars aplenty (Bruce Campbell, David Carradine, Martin Kemp). Director Anthony Hickox helmed both offerings, without quite deciding how much humor was too much humor. In short, genre cultists are pretty much the exclusive audience here. --Robert Horton