Movie Review: Sinister 2 (2015)

D+
Runtime: 97 minutes
Rated: R
Director: Ciarán Foy
Writers: Scott Derrickson, C. Robert Cargill
Starring: James Ransone, Shannyn Sossamon, Robert
Daniel Sloan
Before tackling Sinister 2, what can we say of Sinister 1? It was a decent sleeper with a halfway worthwhile exploration into the child-centered paranormal perspective. And when bad decisions on the part of anyone become a perilous parable of meeting a bloody, gruesome end, things can be said to be going well.

In the first film, we were introduced to "Bughuul" (Nicholas King), an entity that connects to children, especially vulnerable ones. Terror is, of course, always the end result.

The script to the second film has a lot less structure and a lot more distractions, leaving us to wonder how things could have transpired the way they did. But not to be harsh, these aren't besetting problems. The film's lack of engaging content is perhaps the biggest issue, but the acting does, at times, threaten to give us hope. No cigar, though.

It could actually be one of the worst horror films this year. "Shannyn" (Courtney Collins) is a dedicated mother who, along with her sons "Dylan" and "Zach" (real-life twins Robert and Dartanian Sloan), are on the run from an abusive husband and father (Lea Coco). A close friend manages to put the family up in a remote old house to keep off the grid, a house that happened to be the location of horrific murders. All is fine and good until one of the brothers is repeatedly visited by a group of these hell-spawn ghost children (but for some reason, we aren't scared or even creeped out).

The first film managed to keep us on edge much of the time. This one does not. Despite a gruesome setup from the murders of the previous movie, nothing is timed right to elicit fear in an audience. And you know a horror film is not doing well when you start to get angry over how little you care about anyone and actually wish everyone were killed already, or at least hope for some cheap slasher nudity to show up somewhere and earn that R-rating.

Bughuul, the leader of the evil children, shows up in his scenes often without generating the level of suspense found in a pre-teen Halloween Disney flick. Ghostly apparitions and freak electronic happenings account for nearly half of the scares, and no one reacts as they should when in those situations. What little shock is present is musically induced and consists of sudden-scene-change shock value (the cheapest kind). 

James Ransone is again back before us as the former "deputy," now just an investigator of strange occurrences without much of a life. His playful antics and occasional attempts at being funny do not connect well with Shannyn, who is actually more awkward than Ransone's sketchy character. And yet, we care about deputy so-and-so probably more than anyone else because his behavior comes closest to making sense.

Children of the Corn? Not hardly!

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