The Neverending Story II: The Next Chapter
Following the surprisingly successful children's fantasy The Neverending Story (1984), this lesser sequel presents the further adventures of the young boy Bastian in the magical land of Fantasia.
Bastian (Jonathan Brandis) returns to this kingdom of the imagination, reached through a magical antique book, to escape from his unpleasant life as a social outcast with a distant father.
Unfortunately, things aren't so great in Fantasia either, which is under attack by the sorceress Xayide (Clarissa Burt), and Fantasia's young leader soon recruits Bastian to help win the battle for their world.
Several memorable creatures return from the first film, including the Rock Biter and the Luck Dragon, and a number of other strange beasts make appearances along the way. However, the plot often relies on stale fairy-tale elements that make the sequel feel substantially less original than the fresh and unexpectedly charming original.
However, enough children were entertained by the special effects and the simple story of good-versus-evil for a third installment, The Never Ending Story 3: Escape from Fantasia, to follow three years later.