It’s so strange that this movie exists. The first See No Evil came out 8 years ago and as far as I could tell was dreadfully unpopular. Critics and audiences were not fans and I know it couldn’t have made a whole lot of money because I, needing to kill some time, saw this movie at a large cinema on its opening night. I was the only person in the entire theatre. This wasn’t when the movie was on its way out. This was 7 PM on the Friday it opened in one of the most popular theatres in a large city. It was strange and made me feel bad about myself and everything around me. I haven’t thought about the movie since that night and yet here we are with a sequel. I had to watch it because I needed to get some sense of why it exists. Yeah I still have no idea.
See No Evil 2 takes place immediately following the events of the first movie (which they show a condescended version of so you aren’t lost in all this plot) and has Jacob Goodnight (Kane) taken to a hospital morgue after he, along with all of his victims, are found dead at what I think was an abandoned hotel. At this very hospital, Amy (Danielle Harris) is being given a surprise birthday party by all of her friends. I can’t help but have a sneaking suspicion that Goodnight is going to wake up and slaughter all these people. Spoilers he does. Further spoilers, it’s not exciting at all to watch this go down.
This movie is directed by the Soska Sisters who wrote and directed American Mary which I wrote a review for during last year’s marathon. I thought they might be able to breathe a little life and creativity into this movie and at first it looked like maybe I was right as their directing credit is overlaid on an image of the two of them side by side and dead on slabs. This gave me hope. That hope did not last once we started meeting the human characters and they started saying words.
One of the worst sins a slasher movie can commit is having absolutely no interesting characters and See No Evil 2is a shining example. The core group is actually quite small so you would think this meant they would give you some reasons to care about these people. Nope, not really. I mean sure Amy is a likable enough person but she is also a painfully generic character who falls victim to a shoehorned in love story that creeps in suddenly around the halfway point of the movie. The one interesting character is Tamara (Katherine Isabelle), a girl who is turned on by death and the macabre. One of her first scenes has her straddling the dead carcass of Jacob Goodnight and talking dirty/kissing him. She was at least unique and Isabelle has fun with the part but I don’t think it’s a huge spoiler to say that she isn’t around nearly as much as you would like.
Jacob Goodnight does not make for an interesting killer either. All of his back story was already revealed in the first movie and there is no further expansion on that here, just a quick reminder of what we already know. I don’t remember him talking as much in the first movie but it doesn’t amount to much more than “I see your sins!” and some grunts and groans. Kane is certainly an intimidating physical presence and the makings of a solid killer are there but as of now he just falls amongst the generic slasher villain crowd.
A lot of this could be made up for if the movie at least had some interesting kills but it does not deliver in that department either. They make sure to show us that Goodnight is acquiring a whole slew of weapons to use but then he fails to do anything with them. Absolutely none of the deaths here have a shred of originality and the gore is surprisingly light as well. There are a few moments of suspense and a couple of ok scares but for the most part everything happening is dull.
I can at least say one positive thing; the movie looks really good. It’s exceptionally well shot and they make a very stale location (oooo a hospital basement, what a new and original place to have a slasher movie take place) look quite impressive, especially considering how the majority of scenes take place in total darkness.
See No Evil 2 is such a strange entity. Who wanted this? Why does this exist? I may not remember much about the first movie but I’m sure that it had more going for it than this one does. Danielle Harris and Katherine Isabelle are enjoyable and the movie looks quite good but it’s a largely boring movie that feels indistinguishable from tons and tons of other low grade slasher movies. Don’t bother.