Director: Ciaran Foy
Starring: James Ransome, Shannyn Sossamon, Robert Daniel Sloan
Release Date: 21st August 2015 (UK)
Like most horrors these days, there’s never any doubt over the possibility of a sequel; so careful are the filmmakers to keep the story open for another chapter, just in case, and Sinister was no different. However, making a sequel plausible and making it a worthwhile watch are two vastly different challenges, but Sinister 2 is one of the rare horror continuations that lives up to expectation and delivers even more.
Following on almost directly from the events in the first film, the second chapter moves on to a different family who are hiding from their abusive father in a house previously occupied by the family from the first film. However, where the concept remains the same, the focus of this story shifts from the family to the still unnamed detective, whose quest to find out the truth behind the murders intensifies.
One the most striking themes throughout Sinister 2 is domestic violence, and though the general lends itself to this issue it would have been easy to overdo. But considering this is a horror movie, these bigger themes were addressed appropriately and sensitively. The father was established as a guy with clear anger issues, but the actual scenes of abuse were kept to a minimum and played out in a plausible and believable manner. A surprising amount of care for a genre which typically deals with the excessive and unbelievable.
James Ransome, who plays the detective, steps up to the mark to lead a film which is in many ways the same as the first, only made better. It’s almost as though the filmmakers noted everything that was wrong with Sinister and corrected them in Sinister 2, resulting in a horror which was jumpy, thrilling, tense and really well made.
The ending, which unsurprisingly consists of a dramatic fight to the death between good and evil, teetered on the edge of silliness but brought itself back just when it could have gone too far. There is not much interaction between the real world and the supernatural, which entirely works within the idea, though when the mother and son walk into a room overrun by poltergeists they seemed remarkably accepting.
Barring these minor irregularities and continuity errors, Sinister 2 can barely be faulted. That said, it’s still a horror so it won’t be making appearances on the awards circuit any time soon, but for anyone looking for a good Saturday night jump, this definitely ticks all the boxes.