I was a fan of "The Last Exorcism." The 2010 film was a clever take on the found-footage genre, with a really creepy performance from Ashley Bell one of the main reasons it worked.
That being said, I wasn't exactly clamoring for a sequel.
Yet here it is, "The Last Exorcism Part II" which manages to replace pretty much everything good about the original with a string of horror movie cliches. This is a film that serves very little purpose, except perhaps to milk a few more bucks out of unsuspecting movie goers.
This film picks up right where the original left off, with Bell returning as Nell – the naive girl who was possessed by a demon.
It looks as if Nell has escaped that order, trying to get her life back together in a halfway house for girls. At first it looks as if Nell is going to get a fresh start, but eventually the demon comes back determined to take her for good this time.
This is a really bland film, with no surprises and hardly any scares or jolts.
Part of the reason the first film worked so well was because it at least felt grounded in some form of authenticity. This entry is just one false note after another, building to a conclusion that is more comical than frightening.
"The Last Exorcism Part II" also sorely misses Patrick Fabian – whose preacher Cotton Marcus gave the original a perspective that is missing in most of today's horror films.
Bell is asked to carry the film this time and her creepy innocence only goes so far. She's still good, probably the best thing about this wretched endeavor, but I think perhaps it is time she picked a romantic comedy or something else lighter.
In fact I think it's time everyone involved here moves on to something else. This franchise is DOA.