Similar to with the first film, I tried to avoid any and all marketing for this film. I think I might have seen the teaser trailer for it a few months ago when that first popped up, but that was really about it. I knew that this couldn’t match up with how much I enjoyed the first film, but I was still intrigued with how they were going to go with it. Was it going to be like the Saw franchise, repeating the same exact shit over and over again? Or was it going to be more like The Blair Witch Project sequel, where they took mythology that was created and repackaged it into a different style of film? The answer is, well, both.
Don’t eat that shit! It’s not a sandwich!
I would consider this a spoiler alert, but since you learn it in the first five fucking minutes, this story is about the sister of Katie from the original film, so both Katie and Micah from the first film are in this one. Shitty, right? The house in this film is broken into, so security cameras are installed in the whole house, which “explains” why there are so many different angles to capture the haunted-ness. As you can guess, doors creak open, objects move, shadows follow people, pretty much all the shit you expect. Turns out, the ancestors of the characters supposedly made a deal with the devil for lots of money, and in return, some demon gets to claim the first-born male, which happens to have been born in the beginning of the film. I guess the demon takes over the body of the sister, but somehow, through Mexican sorcery, the demon gets passed on to Katie from the first film, and that’s why the events of the first film happened. But then this film jumps to what happens AFTER the end of the first film, and shows Katie killing everyone and taking the baby anyway. Confused? You should be.
It’s almost like the dog and baby are seeing something that we aren’t…almost…
Making a sequel is generally approached in one of two ways. One way is to do everything the exact same way as the original, because if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it. The other approach is typically to raise the stakes and crank things up a bit. This film was a little bit of both, and was mildly successful. On the one hand, it isn’t really hard to do the same exact gags from the first film, but in a different setting. I would have been happy to see those things happening in any house, and if it was done well, it would have been pretty scary. The places that this film tried to escalate the gags made them be CRAZY and took away the subtlety of the first film. For example, in the first film, one of the last things to happen is a woman getting dragged out of bed and down a hallway by a mysterious force. In the sequel, a similar, more exaggerated thing happens with over 30 minutes left. Where can you go from there? Down the toilet, that’s where. Not to say that this film didn’t have some gags that were entertaining, but it’s hard to focus on the good when the bad ones were so bad.
Do you know how hard it is finding pictures from this movie that aren’t a baby and a dog staring at something? Well, it is. So you end up with this fucking weird picture. Sorry!
I mention that you could have placed any characters into this situation and it would be enjoyable to see the reactions, because it’s more about YOUR reaction than it is about the characters. Instead, the filmmakers tried much too hard to justify what was going on. This is also stupid considering the original ending of the first film was changed. The original ending to the first film involved the characters dying, and no one ever knowing the real story. For the theatrical release, the ending was changed so that the demon escaped and no one knew what happened. With the sequel, we learn that the demon comes back to finish what it started. What? Shut up. Who cares. I know I’m talking a lot of shit on this film, but considering how successful the first film was and what was intended, and this film tried so hard to have it tie into the original unnecessarily, so I can’t help but be a little annoyed. Some of the scares were pretty effective, but ultimately it falls a little flat after trying too hard to focus on the mythology of the story, which I’m pretty sure no one gave any fucks about.
Wolfman Moon Scale