People in horror movies are stupid. I know this is a commonly known concept, but in Hatchet II the folks who enter the swamp to track down psychopathic monster Victor Crowley make the horny, drunken teens in any other horror flick look like Rhodes Scholars.
Hatchet II picks up right where the first one left off, but the momentum and terror never really pick up and move the film forward. There’s so much exposition given in the first third of the film that the pacing of the story as a whole grinds to a halt. While it’s interesting to see how Crowley became who he is, the extended flashback about his early years bored me after a while.
After that a team is put together to do two things: retrieve a missing tour boat, and kill Victor Crowley. Now, Crowley is a legend in Louisiana mainly for his bloodlust and his love of eviscerating folks who come near his home. So why do these gullible dopes willingly put their lives on the line to track down a guy whom no one can kill? Money.
But it’s all for nothing as Crowley takes down each “hunter” in some of the bloodiest and goriest kills I have seen. But again, when you go over-the-top with these things they tend to look fake and cartoonish, which is what happens with several of the kills in the movie. It also seemed odd that Crowley had access to so many gas-powered and electric-powered tools of death (a belt sander just comes out of no where and is used to gory effect).
It also didn’t help that the main character, Marybeth isn’t in the film as much, which means we’re stuck with the redneck squad who are there to ensure Crowley has plenty of creative ways to kill people. The problem is we don’t care about any of these people, son their deaths are meaningless and have no real impact on the viewer.
Another difference that effected Crowley’s impact in this movie was his constant presence. In the first film he was usually in shadow or not seen that often. In Hatchet II he becomes a predictable killer; a psycho whose presence doesn’t so much as terrify as make you ask (how’s the next victim gonna die?).
I think the film could have been better, but instead of giving us anything really terrifying or chilling, it just turns into a “look what cool stuff the SFX guys came up with!” show. Don’t get me wrong, I love blood, guts, and gore in horror films, but here it seemed to be lacking a point in some way.
The Blu-ray’s special features include: Hatchet II: Behind the Screams; Hatchet II: First Look; Meet the FX Team; Trailer; Teaser Trailer; TV and Radio Spots; Crew Audio Commentary with Director/Writer Adam Green, Cinematographer Will Barratt; and Make-Up Effect Supervisor Robert Pendergraft; and Cast Audio Commentary with Adam Green, Kane Hodder, and Tony Todd.
Like most horror sequels (remember the rules from Scream 2?) the body count is bigger, the kills are gorier, but with Hatchet II the terror and thrills just aren’t there. Maybe they can redeem themselves if there’s a Hatchet III.
Hatchet II is available NOW on Blu-ray and DVD!
What’s your favorite horror movie sequel? Leave a comment and let us know!