It was a surprise. It was a good B horror film that mixed scary with creepy and made you overlook small flaws.
The Last Exorcism Part 2 is not a surprise. You do have to give credit for it not being called, simply, The Last Exorcism 2. That would be like Final Fantasy 2--oh...wait. But you get the point, the people marketing the movie, at the very least, got that “last” didn’t fit with “2.”
And the film deserves more credit than simply that.
It is well-paced, especially in the first half, and the star, Ashley Bell is a truly unique actress. She looks plain one second and beautiful with a smile. A lot of her shifts between girl next door beauty and haggardness are doubtless due to talented make-up artists but a good portion is also due to the actress herself. It is to be hoped she winds up in films beyond B-horror fare --not insulting B-horror at all but she seems to have talent beyond simply that.
The film itself follows its predecessor immediately. Bell’s character, Nell, is the only survivor at the end of the first film and she has been brought to a house for girls in New Orleans. She still has the naïveté displayed in the first film but after being possessed by a demon and witness to a slew of murders this seems a little unlikely (on close examination but, of course, close examination is unwise in horror films).
As you might expect the demon hasn’t headed back to hell but is still on the hunt for—something. The baby in the first film might be expected to play a major role. It doesn’t (and it, it is, no sex is assigned). But that is a minor quibble.
But maybe not enough to elevate this sequel to the exalted title of “good.”
It lags about half way through, tosses in the obligatory exorcism--mostly performed by characters that appear at the moment the audience knows an exorcism is to be done--and then ends. The film is a notch above the average horror film but nothing to get terribly excited about. It is to be hoped that this ends the series because anything that follows is bound to be convoluted.
After several years of early in the year horror films that stood out? This year has been less outstanding.