The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter

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The NeverEnding Story II:
The Next Chapter
Neverending story two poster.jpg
US theatrical release poster
Directed by George T. Miller
Produced by Dieter Geissler
Screenplay by Karin Howard
Based on The Neverending Story 
by Michael Ende
Starring Jonathan Brandis
Kenny Morrison
Clarissa Burt
John Wesley Shipp
Alaïs Angélique Adell
Alexandra Johnes
Thomas Hill
Music by Robert Folk
Theme Song:
Giorgio Moroder
Cinematography David Connell
Edited by Chris Blunden
Peter Hollywood
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release dates
  • 25 October 1990 (1990-10-25) (Germany)
  • 8 February 1991 (1991-02-08) (United States)
Running time
90 minutes
Country United States
Germany
Language English
Budget $36 million
Box office $56.4 million

The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter is a 1990 German/American fantasy film and sequel to The NeverEnding Story. It was directed by George T. Miller and starred Jonathan Brandis as Bastian Bux, Kenny Morrison as Atreyu, and Alexandra Johnes as the Childlike Empress. The only actor to return from the first film was Thomas Hill as Mr. Koreander.

This film used plot elements from Michael Ende's novel The Neverending Story (primarily the second half), but introduced a new storyline.

Upon its American theatrical release in 1991, the Bugs Bunny animated short "Box-Office Bunny" was shown before the film. This short was also included on the VHS and Laserdisc release later that year.

Plot[edit]

Bastian Bux (Jonathan Brandis) is having troubles at home: his father Barney's (John Wesley Shipp) busy workload is keeping him from consoling Bastian's fear of heights. Bastian flees from his problems to an old bookstore when he hears the Childlike Empress (Alexandra Johnes) summon him to save Fantasia. There, he reunites with Atreyu (Kenny Morrison) Falkor (voiced by Donald Arthur), and Rock Biter and meets a new character: a talking bird-like creature named Nimbly (Martin Umbach). Bastian now faces "the Emptiness", created by the evil sorceress Xayide (Clarissa Burt) and her mechanical "giants". Because Bastian is capable of stopping her, she has a machine constructed in which each time he makes a wish to AURYN, it will strip him of a memory. After Bastian and Atreyu confront Xayide at her castle, she feigns surrender and persuades Bastian to make a series of ridiculous wishes. Upon reading the NeverEnding Story, Barney is surprised to see his son's exploits therein. As he follows Bastian's journey through the book, Atreyu realizes he must stop Bastian before Xayide's hold over him becomes too strong to break. This leads to a fight between the two boys, whereafter Bastian finds the machine collecting his memories and confirms Atreyu's suspicion. Bastian tries to use Atreyu's horse Artax follow Atreyu and Falkor, but is nearly killed by Xayide, and later directed by Nimbly to the correct location. Once there, Bastian sacrifices his memory of his beloved mother to wish Atreyu back to life. Xayide appears and urges him to use his final wish to return home; but he instead wishes her to show compassion, whereupon she destroys herself and restores Fantasia. When thanked by the Childlike Empress, Bastian is able to face his fear of heights by jumping off a high cliff, thus returning home safely. Before the end credits, AURYN reappears on the front cover of the Neverending Story's book.

Cast[edit]

Reception[edit]

The film received overwhelmingly negative reviews from movie critics. According to rotten tomatoes, this film received a terrible 0% rating on its website.

Richard Harrington's review for the Washington Post was typical of the largely negative reaction to the film, "Unlike its predecessor, there are few effects in 'II' worthy of being called special, and events unfold with uniform flatness. Silver City feels like Diet Oz, the sorceress's castle is more hinted at than realized and several new creatures are right out of late-night comedy sketches".[1]

Chris Hicks, writing for the Deseret Morning News, was more kind in his review, noting that it would be enjoyable to children, whereas the first film was enjoyable to the entire family.[2]

Box office[edit]

The film was a catastrophic box office bomb in the United States, grossing only $17 million. However, it was a box office success worldwide.

References[edit]

External links[edit]