V/H/S 2 (2013)
Director(s): Simon Barret, Jason Eisner, Gareth Evans, Eduardo Sánchez, Adam Wingward,
Timo Tjahjanto, Gregg Hale
Writer(s): Simon Barret, Jason Eisner, Gareth Evans, Jamie Nash, Timo Tjahjanto,
John Davies, Brad Miska
So the music starts playing in the background as the credits begin to roll on my romantic comedy between myself and the best horror anthology flick in years, V/H/S (check out the love here). Let’s recap for a bit; I was a drunken mess when I tried watching a horror flick I’ve only heard about in my usual horror circles so needless to say, I did not enjoy the flick the first time around. It wasn’t until a second showing when I realized that this was the fantastically innovative horror anthologies of my dreams. What began as a quirky misunderstanding, ended up in roses, right? So where we do we go from here? We all know how awful sequels can be and the worst offenders are usually the romantic comedies, so again, where do we go from here?
I was dreading watching the sequel, I remember seeing the cover and it was just a slight tweak from the first movie so that’s a good start right? Then the cynical part of my mind began to creep over and I heard a voice telling me, “That first one was pretty awesome right? Let’s just watch that one again and save ourselves the heartache.” As I began to ponder if the creepy inner voice had a point, I remembered that I my friends, am a completist. I am the man who stuck with Smallville for ALL TEN SEASONS. I am the man who stuck around to watch how Heroes ended, despite the abortion that was the last episode of the first season that drove away more than half the fan base. I am a completist and having remembered that, I watched V/H/S 2.
This was a masterpiece of horror anthology.
I have never been so pleased in a modern horror anthology movie and more importantly, a SEQUEL. I’m not even talking about horror movies anymore folks; I am legitimately comparing this sequel to the likes of Empire Strikes Back and Godfather 2. I know this flick will never reach those kinds of heights of popularity, but to me, this was truly one of the greatest sequels ever made. Every single thing that made the first one good, this movie made GREAT. The innovative, quick story lines hit every point it ventured out to make and the kills/effects for this movie took me to a place in my childhood where my eyeballs were glued to the television. The iPhone was not even looked upon for the entirety of the movie. I felt joy just watching each story, even the tale that tied everything together came to a creepy conclusion. One of the stories called, Safehaven is without a doubt, one of the best horror tales in ANY anthology. This was an original, creepy and suspenseful tale that played out more like video game in its last couple minutes. The creative brainchild behind this anthology immediately explains why it turned out to be so fantastic, each director has made movies that are quite enjoyable and giving them a vehicle to make shorter, more concise horror flicks just motivated them to come up with something memorable.
From Simon Barrett, one of the key writers from the original V/H/S, this tale weaves all the other entries together. Two investigators are on the case of a missing college student and while investigating the student’s home, they discover a large stack of VHS tapes.
Phase 1 Clinical Trials
Directed from Adam Wingard (You’re Next), this tale follows a man who recently underwent an experimental procedure that installed a camera into his eye in order to regain his sight and discovers the price he has to pay is much more creepy than he expected. This concept has been done quite a few times before but I like how this take made you pensive in its ending.
A Ride in the Park
Shot mostly with a Go Pro camera (the one all the cool kids use to show their extreme sports), this short shows a cyclist running into some horrifying trouble, the flesh eating kind of trouble. Directed by Eduardo Sánchez of Blair Witch Project fame, this short used the Go Pro format quite well in capturing a realistic take on the zombie flick.
As I previously mentioned, this is by far, one the BEST horror shorts I have ever seen. It’s ridiculous how it planted all the perfect seeds in your head to prepare you for the bat SHIT crazy that unfolds throughout the story. The last couple minutes of this short is what makes this whole movie worth watching. Do I wish this was a full length movie? HELL NO. That’s why this was one of the best horror anthology tales, it’s PERFECT the way it is now, which includes the length. There is no filler in this movie folks, feast away. This was directed from Gareth Evans, the genius behind The Raid movies and Timo Tjahjanto (Macabre) and the result was why I prefer horror anthology flicks when I want to enjoy the pleasures of horror with a group of friends.
Slumber Party Alien Abduction
A strong finish to the movie, this short follows a group of boys amidst an alien invasion. Although there have been full length movies with this concept, the fact that this was a short worked better for the concept. No real character development or plot points but a bunch of scared kids running away from aliens made this entry pretty fantastic. This was directed from Jason Eisener, the man behind Hobo with a Shotgun and it was a great way to close out a great flick by adding an element of Sci-Fi.
This was me, the completist contemplating whether I should give a horror anthology I loved so much another go. What an idiot right? OF COURSE I was going to watch V/H/S 2! Even if it stunk, at least I gave it a shot and for this FEARtastic founder, life is FAR more interesting when we take interest in things that scare us.