Saturday, February 19, 2011

Night Of The Demons 2 - 2.5/5

Although the original 1988 "Night Of The Demons" was a fun campy romp on the 'haunted' house genre, the inevitable sequel "Night Of The Demons 2" spends far too much time on sex jokes and bad dialogue to work quite as well as its predecessor. Although it has its moments of hilarious one liners and some damn fine special effects, the balance to make it work is out of whack and it lends this sequel towards the disappointment end of the franchise pool.

Six years after Angela's (Kinkade) party at the haunted Hull House went horribly wrong, her sister Melissa (Kennedy) is now an orphan living at a religious school. When a group of hormone engaged teens decide to sneak out of the school and pull a prank on Melissa, they accidentally resurrect Angela The Demon Princess. Now Angela has a plan and it requires her sister to enact. Can these dimwit teens and a hard ass sister of the cloth take down one of Hell's worst nightmares and her minions to save Melissa?

Although its hard to admit that the original "Night Of The Demons" was a good movie, it had the right idea of getting the campy humor to work with some legit scare tactics. This sequel doesn't fair so well in this department. Rarely do the scares work. The final act of the film, when they all head over to Hull House to save Melissa from a fate worse than the movies dialogue, does some nice things visually to bring back some creepy vibes but it rarely works on the 'scare' level. There are some great special effects (with particular nod to Angela's final snake like transformation at the end) but it doesn't save it from being rather lackluster in the Horror side. Great ideas, but poor execution on this end.

The film also seems pretty hit or miss on the humor too. After the first 30 minutes of relentless sex jokes and rather cliche religious funny fodder, I was ready to just mute the damn thing. Despite the occasionally solid one liner and over the top slapstick joke that worked (the demon playing basketball with his head was so dumb it was hilarious), the film just comes off more awkward then truly humorous. Unintentional humor abounds here on random things, like hands that reach through a demon's breasts to grab a guy, but it never really tickles the funny bone like the first one did with its cliche homages.

"Night Of The Demons 2" starts trying to become its own franchise instead of one that homages and builds on the cliches of 80s horror. It has some solid moments and ends on a rather strong note, but getting past the first half of the film will surely be a struggle. Poor dialogue, worse acting, and a mismatched sense of horror/comedy plagues this film to be lesser than its predecessor.

BONUS RANT: [Spoiler] This film likes to throw very random things into the mix without ever explaining them. The one that takes the cake is how our kick ass Sister of the Lord randomly grows a head back after being decapitated by Angela. You read that right. Pow. Head flies off. Body drops to floor. Pop. New head (with head gear and all) pops out of the shoulders. No one questions a damn thing. Except me, I guess. Soooooo random. 

Written By Matt Reifschneider

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