You will be pleased, but unsurprised, to find out that this is better than part 1. Being kicked in the head for 2 hours is a bit better than part 1, though, so we’re starting from a very low threshold. Uwe Boll is merely the producer this time, and the budget is substantially smaller – the only casting choices of note in this are Danny Trejo in an uncharacteristically subdued little role and Lance Henriksen as the mysterious expert on all things supernatural.
We have a slightly smaller scale than part 1, which is also welcome. The first twenty minutes or so are very curious, as we’re introduced to people who we’d expect to be stars of a Boll movie (Natassia Malthe, too good for this garbage; Jason Connery; and Zack Ward, who we’ll be meeting again in “Postal”), only to have them killed off, and then have people who seem completely unrelated to the central conflict suddenly know all about it and become the stars of the rest of the movie. There’s a choice between “this was heavily edited, so it makes no sense” and “this just makes no sense” and neither of them reflect well.
After sort of inheriting top billing in this movie from Ward, we meet Edward Carnby. That was Christian Slater’s name in part 1, but here he’s an entirely different character, and played by Rick Yune, who you may remember from actually good movies like “The Fast And The Furious” and “Die Another Day”. What he’s doing slumming it in this movie is anyone’s guess. He’s taken in by another group of independent, “Supernatural” style occult investigators, who are trying to kill an immortal witch-spirit who…nah, her motivation is definitely a bit unclear.
In fact, everyone’s motivation is unclear in this. I don’t need a set of life stories, but at least some reason why these people have chosen to dedicate their lives to tracking down a ghost would be handy. It might also have been handy for a movie called “Alone In The Dark” to have the characters be alone, in the dark, for at least some of the movie. But that might just be me, picking fault. Your opinion may be different. Also, if I’d fired a thousand bullets at a smoke-figure and done no damage whatsoever, I’d probably give up on the shooting thing. Not these guys though!
Okay, it’s not quite as aggressively bad as part 1, but it’s like they were trying to make it terrible! What have the filmmakers got against explaining anything to us? The witch is all ghostly and made up of smoke at one point, then later on she’s fully corporeal, with no reason given for how she went from one to the other. Why was the witch so fixated on this one group of people? Why not go after a random few people, as at the very least they won’t have all sorts of spells and potions to try and fight you off?
Actually, I’m not convinced this is better than part 1 now. I apologise for my somewhat slipshod review, readers, but this movie is tough to pin down. It feels like the final two episodes of some TV show we never got the chance to see.
Honestly, it’s probably best to avoid both of these. Why anyone would want or pay for a sequel to one of the most universally reviled movies of the 21st century is beyond me, but is probably down to some obscure clause in a contract somewhere. Sorry, good actors and crew who worked on this movie! You deserved better.
Rating: thumbs down