Thursday, August 27, 2015

Sinister 2 or The Adventures of Ex-Deputy So & So

9 of 10 viewers "Liked" "Sinister 2" (USA, 2015)
Here's what the creatures of the Overlook Theatre had to say:

The Impostor - "I wasn't expecting much going into this film due to the overwhelming negative reviews. My expectations were really low but I still was excited to see this opening night. The original Sinister was such a great film, I loved everything about it. So now after watching Sinister 2 I actually really enjoyed it. It still carried that dark eerie feel with the added humor and drama that worked well. It's hard doing horror sequels and making them as good if not better than the original. Even though I still feel the original is better I would highly recommend this to anyone. Horror fans will enjoy it so don't listen to these negative reviews and brutal critics." - 4 Stars

KillDozer - "The writers of the first Sinister installment bring Bughuul back to the screen with the director of the well received Citidal behind the camera. Being a constant hater of what I call "forced sequels," I was not in the mood to pay my hard earned money just to be bored. I can honestly say that I thoroughly enjoyed this follow up, even after going into it ready to walk out half way through. Buhguul rarely shows his "Slipknot meets KC Jones" face so that was a bonus. The new "snuff" films were creative and fun, and the child actors pulled it off with great success. The story was entertaining but lacked solid climax or a strong ending in my opinion. Still I had fun watching and am actually excited to see where Sinister takes us next!" - 3 Stars (Worth the admission)

Ice Giant - "I do like the original more but this movie had enough going for it to seem like its own original movie. The little kid actors were great, especially since a bad little kid actor can ruin a whole movie... The home movies this time around were especially awesome. "Gone Fishin'," which you get to see early in the movie was particularly amazing." - 4 Stars

Lord Battle - "Cults worshiping an evil Scandinavian god of art, how could this film be bad??!! Think for yourself and ignore the 4% on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics will never appreciate horror and the rare times they do it has to be justified by giving it a different label like "Thriller" or "Elevated Genre." Sinister 2 is a lesson in sequel film making, adding new perspective to Bughuul's myth while continuing to keep him mostly hidden in the shadows. It's disappointing that the test audiences complained about the original ending, since I can't imagine anything worse that the one they used." - 4 Stars

Huntress - "I was not too concerned about the ridiculously low ratings this movie was getting, because the numbers seemed almost comical and I really wanted to see where they would take the story regardless. After seeing the film, I still have no idea why the critics gave it so much hate. Sinister 2 kept Bughuul interesting, even after a lot of his mystery was revealed in the first movie." - 3.5 Stars

B4DK - "Totally great where this picked up from the first one. Creepy vibes and some scare jumps. The home movie tribute films for Buhguul do not disappoint. Going into this and seeing a lot of negative reviews I was very skeptical. In the end this movie does not deserve such hate." - 3 Stars

Math Mage - "The adventures of ex-deputy So & So, Bughuul Hunter!" - 3.5 Stars

The Berkeley Blazer - "Enjoyable enough is a phrase that comes to mind. This sequel stands on its own in good and bad ways; its country setting and more ensemble approach make it seem almost like a summer vacation horror that explores the lore of Bughuul which I found refreshing, while on the other hand the spiral into despair and madness that made the first such a strong film is not present at all. Tonally, this doesn't feel very Sinister with the exception of a few choice tunes. No matter, the actors are all superb, including the real-life brothers that play the protagonists. The abusive father that huants the lives of this films family is so loathsome and montsrous that our friend Bughuul seems kawaii in comparison." - 3 Stars

The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

After seeing The Gallows and The Vatican Tapes, it's safe to say that I was a little worried going into Sinister 2. Critics just did not enjoy this film, the score on Rotten Tomatoes was at 4% the morning we went to the theater. To my surprise, the majority of the complaints didn't even seem far-fetched and actually articulated one of my original concerns; too much Bughuul. Despite a dumb scene in a confessional and a weak (re-shot) ending, I'm happy to say this fear did not become reality and the half dozen little kids that littered the film didn't annoy me either (It's a little known fact that Lord Battle doesn't actually like Children of the Corn or Village of the Damned)! I believe I mentioned in the review of Sinister that the kids in that film were my least favorite part and my only real complaint. BlumHouse made a smart move grabbing Ciaran Foy, since he "cut-his-teeth" working with children on his first film Citedal. Believe me, it shows in Sinister 2.

Two years ago the Overlook Theatre reviewed Sinister and I wrote about how the film was a dark commentary on horror fans. Thankfully the writing duo that brought you the first Sinister (Scott Derrikson (also directed Sinister) and C. Robert Cargill) kept this narrative alive by moving in the natural direction, the origin of horror fans.

Constantly surrounding yourself with horror films, literature, and practically anything else you can get your hands on, will do two things for you. The first is always confuse non-fans; people just don't understand why horror is so amazing (their loss). The second is attract other like-minds. This doesn't mean that all my friends are horror nerds (if you read this site, you know this already) but I definitely have friends that I wouldn't even know if it wasn't for horror. The reason I stress this point is every monster-kid, horror-nerd, or gore-whore I've ever met was introduced the same way as The Impostor, KillDozer, and I, from a family member who loved horror. This doesn't mean rebellious kids who watched horror only to anger their parents don't exist, maybe it just means they end up a different caliber of horror fan.

Sinister 2 has a very interesting commentary on children growing up horror fans. In the kids movies, their families are always the subject. Is this some Freudian commentary on horror film directors, saying the horror films they make are a vessel for violence channeled at the past? Freddy Kreuger was named after a kid who bullied Wes Craven, after all. So are the kids in Sinister angry at their parents for moving into cheap housing and ignoring the tragedies that occurred there previously? Dylan and Zach Collins definitely had reason to be angry at their parents. With an abusive dad and a mom who seems to do nothing about it, they make the perfect candidates for Buhguul worshipers.

But is this what the film makers are trying to say while exploring such dark topics? I doubt it. What we can say for certain is that kids learn that they love or hate horror films at an early age and for the ones that find it's a passion that carries into adulthood, they often dream about directing their own horror stories. Lastly, Rated "R" horror is never a critics cup of tea, so don't let a bad score on Rotten Tomatoes keep you from supporting the genre you love.

- Lord Battle

*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not effect the rating.

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