Top critical review
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on 29 April 2014
When the main protagonist of a film ends up getting caught masturbating to porn, you know the creators have officially run out of ideas.
Grave Encounters 2 is literally the same film, minus the atmosphere, plus some more scooby-doo-esque running away from monsters-that-can't-catch-you scenes. Most importantly of all, the film wastes a good hour or so trudging along from booze filled teen parties over the protagonists around film student Alex Wright (who bears some resemblance to Sheldon Cooper with longer hair) trying to shoot a corny horror movie to some pseudo-investigation done (like visiting the house of the senile mother of Lance, the protagonist of Grave Encounters) after Alex receives messages from an anonymous user called "deathawaits666" (like...really?). Alex becomes more and more convinced that Grave Encounters 1 was real, and having all of the members of the Grave Encounters show reported as missing after they did the last episode in the mental asylum (now no longer called the "Collingwood Psychiatric Hospital" located in Maryland, but rather a bleeped out location in Canada) only adds to his desire to travel there with his friends and check the place out. When deathawaits666 also agrees to meet him there in the hospital's sub level at 3 a.m. we all do start wondering who this mysterious user is... (*eye roll*)
So while having wasted almost half the film depicting events leading to the teens finally arriving at the mental asylum, Grave Encounters 2 then more or less jumps straight to the action with almost no time left to get creeped out by the location itself. We have ouija boards, a monster very much resembling one of the Darkseekers from I Am Legend but one which only has a screentime of 10 seconds, and the spirits' same old tactic of isolating crew members and then killing them with their supernatural powers after the protagonists employ the same old stupid strategy of collecting all cameras before leaving and...what else? Splitting up to speed up the process.
In fact, they used the same old hallways and corridors to film the scenes. Like...does this supposedly huge hospital only have 4 or 5 locations worth filming? Come on. And one of these locations (the bathtub area) doesn't even play a role after its initial introduction. We are, however, treated to a small new area in the hospital (actually two new areas...actually, make it three if you count the child ward) not present in the previous movie, and a surprise new story element that at least drives the overarching plot SOMEWHAT forward (oh and an arguably really nicely done elevator scene that gave me the creeps), but the ending of the movie is so terribad that it actually makes the ending of Grave Encounters 1 look realistic.
The actors are LAME, and I'd say the only two semi-decent performers were the girls, with Jennifer taking most of the spotlight. DONT WATCH Grave Encounters 2 if you didn't watch the first one. And if you did watch the first one, watch Grave Encounters 2 only to get the only positive effect about making you appreciate the atmosphere and acting of the previous Grave Encounters more.
A 2, out of 5 stars for that teetsy tiny bit of entertainment this film offers, but 3 missing stars for a boring, predictable, badly acted rehash of the previous film that tries to create a new plot revolving around Dr. Friedkin, but ultimately fails to offer any new info.