Archive for Sequel

The Descent 2 (2009)

Posted in Horror Review, Seq Week with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 11, 2010 by Pass the Popcorn!

Director: Jon Harris

Writers: J Blakeson

James McCarthy

James Watkins

Tagline: Fear runs deeper

Plot: Distraught, confused, and half-wild with fear, Sarah Carter emerges alone from the Appalachian cave system where she encountered unspeakable terrors…

Cast: Shauna Macdonald – Sarah

Natalie Jackson Mendoza – Juno

Krysten Cummings – Rios

Gavan O’Herlihy    – Vaines

Joshua Dallas – Greg

Review (spoilers):

After a huge success with the first Descent, it was pretty obvious that the sequel will come out sooner or later. And here it is. The Descent 2 picks up where the first one end. Sarah finally managed to somehow exit those caves (it was never said how) only to return once more in them accompanied with a rescue party. Just like many sequels, The Descent 2’s quality is not nearly as good as it’s precursor’s. Watching this felt like a cold shower, I expected some good scares and a frightening atmosphere (just like in the first Descent). What I got was an average and more action driven horror sequel with cheap scares. Those action scenes were average from time to time too. All in all, it really isn’t bad but it lacks some/any good details which deserve to be specially mentioned.

The script has some really random parts in it which still aren’t completely clear to me (including the last few scenes). Of course, there wasn’t much room for character development in it so some characters are cheap cannon fodder. Some of them die very quick and in short meantime periods.  Because all of those action scenes The Descent 2 isn’t a boring a movie (far from that) but it still could use a lot of improvement (like some explanations in the plot). The best thing in the whole movie is surely Juno’s return but her strange and unexpected (and I’d dare to say even unimportant) come back wasn’t explained at all. I wanted to know how she managed to kill those crawlers from the first movie with a leg that is hurt. And of course how did she manage to stay alive in the caves. Questions like this are never answered and I think it would have been awesome if we could have seen some of Juno’s flashbacks over the past few days (like it was made with Sarah). That would have took the movie to a whole new level.

Unfortunately, this aren’t the only things that were bad in The Descent 2. The worst thing in it are surely the looks of the crawlers, those creatures who dwell in the caves. Comparing them to the first movie they look awful. Their faces are now somewhat deformed (in a possible attempt to make them look scarier) which makes them look silly. I just have to comment one scene where we even have a female crawler. I must admit I always assumed that crawlers were some asexual creatures (Tbh: I’m not really interested in their mating habits) because we couldn’t see a single female one in the first Descent. In The Descent 2 you see a female crawler in only one scene and her total cameo was like 10 seconds or less? Why did they put her in? I can’t find an obvious reason to that. My only guess is that they wanted the crawlers to look more disturbing (or change the audience’s thoughts about them) so putting a female crawler was a desperate movie for doing so. There is one more thing that wants to change your opinion about crawlers: An alpha male one. Yeap, we are being introduced to the ultimate 6 feet tall boss crawler. Yawn.

The Descent 2 makes up for everything with all those bloody and gory fights. There were some ok kills which don’t go much above average. If you started watching the movie expecting (and wanting) it be more action driven, you’ll possibly find it to be more enjoying than I did.

My Rating: 5/10 … An ok movie, really nothing special. The best thing about it are it’s average fight scenes.

Btw, with this review we oficially end the first Seq Week here at Drugsbunny’s Horror Reviews!  (I know that the Seq Week lasted about 10 days, but no matter, there are 7 reviews about  movie sequels). Thank you all for reading my blog ; ).

Cube 2: Hypercube (2002)

Posted in Horror Review, Seq Week with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 10, 2010 by Pass the Popcorn!

Director: Andrzej Sekula

Writers: Sean Hood

Ernie Barbarash

Lauren McLaughlin

Tagline: Welcome to a new dimension in fear

Plot: Eight strangers find themselves waking up in a strange cube-shaped room with no recollection of how they came to be there…

Cast: Kari Matchett – Kate Filmore

Geraint Wyn Davie – Simon Grady

Grace Lynn Kung – Sasha

Matthew Ferguson – Max Reisler

Neil Crone – Jerry Whitehall

Review (spoilers):

Despite all average things in the first Cube, I still found it to be watchable and enjoyable. It’s sequel is just dull. Cube 2: Hypercube doesn’t have nearly good mood as the first Cube ( al though it starts nice ). All the rooms lost their colors and are now plain white and shiny. It was sometimes painful to watch all that “shining”. There was absolutely none of that perfectly dark atmosphere which followed us in the first movie. The whole concept of booby traps has been changed too. They have become some random CGI effects (which were far from good) and while watching the movie you notice that the characters have no way to find out which room is trapped and which not (their only way of fighting the traps is to manically escape the room when they accidentally trigger one). So you can easily conclude that in this sequel the characters are being thrown in with no actual purpose. Actually, some of them just sit and discuss why were they put in but no one’s real purpose is never revealed during the whole movie. The conception of the maze has been changed drastically, which is a bad thing. Hypercube loses every possible link to reality so you’ll see some very strange (and awful) things while watching like parallel realities (seriously, whose idea was that), time shifts or sudden gravity changes. The best thing about the first Cube was it’s real idea, no matter how Sci-Fi that movie looked I still couldn’t shake the feeling that this maze was somehow possible to make out by using a huge amount of money. Hypercube just isn’t real, on the contrary, it wants to be more and more supernatural.

Visually, Hypercube, was bad and the traps were boring. So you would expect that it would at least have some decent actors who will play some interesting characters. Wrong. The characters in Hypercube look like piles of meat glued together. There is NO character development at all. It seems even the writers were sick of them so they are getting killed in the most stupid possible ways ever. It’s hard to say what everything sucked about them because the list doesn’t seem to end. But believe me, some scenes and dialogues were so awful and they made me laugh. And of course, I forgot to mention that all of characters are walking cliches (actually, it is very hard to even call them “characters” ). I had the feeling some characters were copy/pasted from the first cube only with slightly different characteristics. In this one you also have a mad man who goes on a rampage and kills everyone he sees. But his transformation seems so shallow, you just get the feeling it was made so the movie can have a “main bad guy”. There is a person with mental problems in Hypercube as well. And last but not least,  a very intelligent girl who has problems with her sight. Do I even have to comment how some wannabe twists were pretty obvious from the start? The script was horrible.

Apparently, the writers also think that the audience is a group of retards. From time to time they give you little clues about who is responsible for the making of  the hypercube. A company named Izon which produces weapons.  That name is mentioned all over again through the whole movie. Do they think that we, the watchers, are a group of baboons who can’t conclude something simple as that after we hear the name Izon the first 2 od 3 times? That discovery had completely killed the mood from the first Cube where we don’t have a clue who stands behind all this. Putting the name of that company in the script seemed like a desperate move to me.

My Rating: 3/10… Miles away from the first Cube (and from something that is worth watching)

REC 2 (2009)

Posted in Horror Review, Seq Week with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2010 by Pass the Popcorn!

Directors: Jaume Balagueró

Paco Plaza

Writers: Jaume Balagueró

Manu Díez

Paco Plaza

Tagline: *There is no tagline yet*

Plot: The action continues from [Rec], with the medical officer and a SWAT team outfitted with video cameras are sent into the sealed off apartment to control the situation.

Cast: Manuela Velasco – Ángela Vidal

Pablo Rosso – Rosso

Jonathan Mellor – Dr. Owen

Ariel Casas – Larra

Pau Poch – Tito

Review (spoilers):

This is a sequel to a Spanish horror from 2007 named REC which soon became very popular (it was even remade as Quarantine a year after it’s release). The original REC scared the shit out of me (honestly, it was one of the scariest movies I ever saw) so I had high hopes for the sequel. Unfortunately, it failed me.

There are lot of new things in REC 2, some of them I liked, some I loathed. The first thing that I found to be awesome was 2 parallel stories in which you follow two separate groups of people. The first group of people are swat members led by a priest which goal is to find blood from the first infected girl. Apparently, we learn that the source of this strange epidemic is a diabolic one. So our beloved infected/zombie flick from the first REC turns into a some Exorcist chase. I also have to mention that crosses are much more powerful weapons than guns now. As you can expect, this group is being attacked by the infected almost all the time. Those action scenes look like segments from a FPS game, nothing more than a mindless shooting. By seeing this you may notice that REC has become a little more mainstream than it should be. It was made for a larger audience. Instead of a dark and scary atmosphere followed by a strange social commentary (like in the first REC) you get FPS action scenes.

The second group is consist of one fireman, one man who wants to bring some medicine to his sick daughter and…..teenagers. I would never actually expect teenagers to be protagonists in a REC movie, it is a blasphemy. I think you now get my point about this movie being a little too mainstream and commercial. The story in which we follow the second group is a standard teen horror one. This part was full of really irritating characters, one of them is a girl in Converse All Star shoes who screams all the time. Damn, that just pissed me off, it was completely pointless.

But this isn’t the end to random shit. The main character from the first REC, Ángela Vidal, returns to this one. The explanation (and the idea) of her return is a really retarded one. By that point I just wanted to turn off the movie, I didn’t like the direction in which it went at all. The whole end is also very bad written, I don’t know….it was just too naive and stupid but still so complex (in a bad way). By the way, the whole idea of having a zombie/demon boss which would control the rest of the infected army was also somehow….bad? The script and the plot was a complete disappointment.

The good things about this movie (besides the idea of having parallel stories) are camera taping and some action sequences. The rest was just average, and the luminance isn’t as good as in the original REC (it was too bright). Honestly, I don’t know what they were trying to accomplish with REC 2, it had an awesome potential but it turned out to be like this.

My Rating: 5/10… Avoid it, the original REC was pretty good without it

The Devil’s Rejects (2005)

Posted in Horror Review, Seq Week with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2010 by Pass the Popcorn!

Director: Rob Zombie

Writers: Rob Zombie

Tagline: Hell doesn’t want them. Hell doesn’t need them. Hell doesn’t love them. This world rejects them.

Plot: A little while after the murders of the young people from HO1KC The Firefly family must escape Their house because it is surrounded by police. Capt. Spaulding meets up with Baby and Otis to find a hiding place. Meanwhile, Officer Whydel, Sherrif Whydel’s brother seeks revenge on the family who became known as The Devil’s Rejects.

Cast: Sid Haig – Captain Spaulding

Bill Moseley – Otis

Sheri Moon Zombie – Baby

William Forsythe – Sheriff Wydell

Ken Foree – Charlie Altamont

Review (spoilers):

First time I watched this movie was few years ago. I couldn’t remember everything from that watching so I watched it again today. I have to say that The Devil’s Rejects is a better movie than House Of 1000 Corpses. Rob Zombie evolved in film making since then. HO1KC was just another Texas Chainsaw Massacre copy but The Devil’s Rejects is something much more.

The semi original idea that I instantly liked is that the bad guys from the HO1KC are now “good” guys which we follow during the movie (they are being referred to as The Devil’s rejects). The Devil’s Rejects consists of Otis, Baby and Captain Spaulding. They are all so sinister and brutal in their killing but still likeable and from time to time funny so I cheered for them to win in the end. Their main enemy is a good cop went bad. He seeks revenge on them because they had killed his brother. He chases them around the country as they are running away from the police. As you can see the plot is nothing special, actually the whole script is below average. There are lot of plot holes and the dialogue is sometimes absolutely cheesy.

The best thing in the whole script  is the guy who holds a bar in which The Devil’s Rejects seek shelter, his name is Charlie. His character surely had some Tarantino influences in it but I won’t call this a rip off but a good thing, he was one of the highlights of the movie. The other highlight is Captain Spaulding, Sid Haig managed to put up a good job. Kudos to him! Otis, as a character, was also ok, I guess. Some time he seemed like a mindless baboon but he did have his good moments. The only character I couldn’t really stand was Baby. I’m not a big fan of Sheri Moon Zombie nor her acting, she is a little irritating. I know that she is Rob Zombie’s wife and he loves her but I don’t think he should use her in his every movie, using same actors over and over again just limits his potentials as a movie maker. I also have to mention that Danny Trejo had some screen time in this movie, he’s a living legend: ).

Soundtrack of The Devil’s Rejects also had a big role in the average movie feeling. Rob Zombie (a music maker himself) chose some decent song which perfectly fit the movie’s atmosphere – including the Lynyrd Skynyrd’s classic “Freebird” which is used in the final scene (which is also the best scene in the whole film). Besides that, The Devil’s Rejects relies on some torturing scenes which are the only horror elements you will see. Those torture scenes are somehow weak and not very original but still cool, unfortunately, the overall feeling about them is nothing special.

I found The Devil’s Rejects to be a very enjoyable movies, as I said before, much better than HO1KC. It seemed that Rob Zombie’s directing career went suddenly up with this one but he went on to remake Halloween. I think he only managed to piss of Halloween fans by doing so and Halloween fans are the last thing you want to piss off.

My Rating: 7/10… A sequel that is really worth watching

28 Weeks Later (2007)

Posted in Horror Review, Seq Week with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 3, 2010 by Pass the Popcorn!

Director: Juan Carlos Fresnadillo

Writers: Rowan Joffe

Juan Carlos Fresnadillo

Enrique López Lavigne &

Jesús Olmo

Tagline: It All Begins Again

Plot: Six months after the rage virus was inflicted on the population of Great Britain, the US Army helps to secure a small area of London for the survivors to repopulate and start again. But not everything goes to plan.

Cast: Robert Carlyle – Don

Catherine McCormack – Alice

Rose Byrne – Scarlet

Jeremy Renner – Doyle

Harold Perrineau – Flynn

My Rating ( spoilers ):

I have to apologize for not writing any posts yesterday but I was really busy, excuse me for that. But let’s not waste more of our time on that.

As you may know, we entered the first annual Seq Week here at Drugsbunny’s horror reviews so let’s get started.

Some time ago I watched 28 Days Later and I didn’t like it but, luckily for me, I heard it had a sequel named 28 Weeks later. It was apparently a very good movie which grade on imdb didn’t disappoint. I’m a big zombie/infected fan so I couldn’t wait to watch this one. After doing so, I was very surprised, in a positive way, that it’s so much better than than 28 Days Later. 28 Weeks later just took all the good things from the first movie but made a different story, it was a recipe for success. So in 28 Weeks Later you’ll still have awesome soundtracks and creepy infected puking blood.

The plot of 28 Weeks Later (unlike 28 Days Later) revolves more around families. A simply average family become the key figure in fighting the infection which I found to be much better than the idea of complete strangers fighting their way together. I have to compliment all the actors in this one, especially the children ones, they were amazing. Considering that this movie has a family element it is also more dramatic and traumatic than Days Later. There were some really sad scenes in it which will surely make you to react somehow, it is hard to stay cool-headed after seeing them. All of those dramatic, post-apocalyptic atmosphere is followed by gray illumination. Simply perfect.

But, of course, don’t think that this is just a wannabe horror family drama (like let’s say Carriers – which sucked btw). If you want so see some real zombie ass pounding action and get scared from time to time, 28 Weeks Later will please your appetites. The action segment is perfectly combined with some dramatic scenes like when the snipers start to shoot everyone. Oh, yeah, you also have a little comedy element in some scenes, especially the one when a large group of zombies gets killed using a helicopter and it’s propeller. Actually, that was more bad ass than funny but I found it to be hilarious in some strange, wicked way. I also found the horror scenes to be nice, nothing special but still worth watching.

The bad side of this movie is definitely it’s length. It takes too much time for the film to develop itself. And when it does, it just ends too quick. So it is somehow bad edited. And I just couldn’t get into that simple medical solution for the infection, I found it to be a little too naive.

Anyways, this movie is MUCH better than 28 Days Later. If you want my advice, watch this one and not it’s precursor, you won’t be so sorry.

My Rating: 8/10… Gives a good name to an average serial