Kevin S. (Night of the Demons) Tenney’s uninspired sequel to Jim Wynorski’s surprisingly fun Demolition High is another Die Hard variation with Corey Haim in the lead. This time out, he tags along with Ami Dolenz on a class field trip. When terrorists take the students hostage, it’s up to Corey to stop them.
Despite the title, this doesn’t even take place at college. Instead, it’s at a boring power plant where the terrorists try to poison the local drinking water. Haim was entertaining in the last movie, so it’s befuddling that he gets less screen time this time around. Disappointingly, he doesn’t do any of the MacGyver Jr. type of booby traps like he did in the original. Instead, he mostly relies on dumb luck to take out the bad guys, which diminishes the fun. Haim and Dolenz are pretty good together though, which makes you wish they had better material to work with.
Like the original, Demolition University suffers from a weak villain (Todd Allen). The good news is that Robert Forster is excellent as the Army colonel who is stuck outside the plant negotiating with the terrorists over a walkie-talkie. These scenes are usually the weakest in any Die Hard rip-off, but Forster’s cagey performance makes them rather engaging. It’s definitely a lot more fun than the tired cat-and-mouse scenes with Haim dodging terrorists. We also have Laraine Newman as the professor who gets kidnapped. She isn’t given anything particularly memorable to do, but it’s nice to know she got a paycheck out of all this.
Allen gets the best line though when he says, “Look what we have here… A Mexican standoff. Or, as they say in Mexico, ‘A standoff!’”
AKA: Demolition U.