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Five Favorite Things:: Night of the Demons 2 (1994) By Unk

October 28th, 2020 by unkle lancifer · 5 Comments

1: Perfect for Halloween.

The original NIGHT OF THE DEMONS is a well-acknowledged perennial Halloween-set horror favorite but somehow its nearly equal sequel gets somewhat shafted. NIGHT OF THE DEMONS 2 kindly treats viewers to plenty of spooky season eye candy including but not limited to a plethora of costumes and decorations at an All Hallow’s Eve bash. Sure the trees are tellingly green but the film’s climax features a hefty load of crunchy leaves framing a courtyard fight for life. Beyond the visual array, the film’s consistent commitment to mischief, hijinks and mayhem is the perfect fit for a Halloween night.

2: Solid Sequel.

NOTD2 does everything a sequel should do and it does it right. It expands from the original film without stepping on its toes, it takes it in new directions while still being faithful and it winks toward the previous film whilst offering the unexpected and new. It’s actually such an airtight, well constructed ship that I’d say it can stand completely on its own and familiarity with its source material is beneficial but certainly not required.

3: The Humor.

Combining humor with horror can be a treacherous affair and the road to hell is paved with failed attempts. As silly and over the top as NOTD2 is willing to go (this is the type of film to shamelessly utilize the old holy water in a super soaker gag) it’s able to keep the threat level high enough that the chuckles never sink the ship. A kick-ass nun with Ninja skills may elicit eye rolls on paper but the miraculous way it is pulled off here creates a memorable heroine for the ages. Sick, dark, bawdy and maybe a slash corny this movie is consistent giddy fun.

4: The Special Effects.

NOTD2 may be a mid-nineties horror film but the squishy brazen gore and twisted monster effects may have you convinced it was born a good decade earlier. Perhaps because it avoided theaters and was released straight to video, NOTD2 clearly has no qualms showing the good stuff and there is some real eye-popping artistry on display if you’re so inclined. Be prepared for a horrific mouth injury, breasts that transform into grabbing hands, one of the better decapitations I’ve ever witnessed and a final-boss snake-beast that puts most big studio horror pictures to shame.

5: The Cast.

Returning Amelia Kinkade’s demonic Angela is still the star of the show but just as in the original, she’s surrounded by many a scene-stealer. Merle Kennedy (MAY) is highly sympathetic as Angela’s estranged sister Melissa who is better known as “Mouse”, Cristi Harris (NIGHT OF THE SCARECROW) shines as Mouse’s only ally, Zoe Trilling (DR. GIGGLES) is the ultimate bad girl and Christine Taylor (THE CRAFT, CAMPFIRE) is her usual brilliant self as snarky but ultimately likable brat Terri. For my money, Jennifer Rhodes performance as Sister Gloria is the jewel on the film’s crown. At first, she is presented as the typical nightmare scold but by the end of the movie, her character keenly destroys all cliché expectations. On her Imdb page, Rhodes says she’s best known for a horror film she doesn’t wish to discuss but since she was in SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE 2 as well, I’m going to assume that’s that one she is referring to. Surely, she can only be proud of NOTD2; a fun, frightening foray perfect for Halloween viewing.

Tags: Five Favorite Things · Uncategorized




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Ben S
Ben S
1 month ago

We just watched WITCHBOARD 2: THE DEVIL’S DOORWAY. The first time I saw it it was a New Release and I was like “What is this?! Where is the stunningly beautiful Tawny Kitaen?! This woman is BLONDE,” and for years I was like “That movie sucks.” Sure enough I LOVE it and could not believe how stylistically *expensive* it seemed. How could I have forgotten Laraine Newman’s performance for all these years? I’ve never seen NOTD2 but now I want to badly!

bostonmatty
bostonmatty
1 month ago

Great write-up Unk! I totally agree with how fun this movie is. The first one is very special to me and I fully expected the sequel to stink (and surprise, it doesn’t!) Part 3 is another story… But Part 2 is so wacky and weird and fun. We need to find what happened to Zoe Trilling! And just why the wonderful Jennifer Rhodes does not want to discuss her horror career. She was on this scandalous (for the time) show called Nightingales in 1989 that I used to tape every week. Also, completely in agreement at how excellent the special effects in this one are, considering the low budget. I love the opening scene as well.

Ben S., Yes seek out NOTD2. If I remember correctly, you are the only other person on earth who enjoys Prom Night 4 as much as I do, so I feel confident saying you’ll like this one!

SmallDarkCloud
SmallDarkCloud
1 month ago

I’m a fan of Prom Night IV. I first learned of it from Michael Weldon’s second Psychotronic book, and I couldn’t believe the crazy premise. I finally watched the movie on Amazon Prime, years later. Sure enough, it really is about a demonic priest locked away in a church for decades (with the prom angle kind of awkwardly shoehorned in). The movie also deals with a serious and timely theme, priests committing sexual abuse, which Weldon didn’t mention. It’s really worth seeing.

The house in Los Angeles that was used as Hull House was destroyed shortly after the NotD2 production finished, according to a “filming locations” website I read, so NotD3 had to look elsewhere (it was shot in Montreal).

Brian Trenchard-Smith directed NotD2, and he’s a very under appreciated genre director (as Quentin Tarantino could probably tell you). He made some of those great exploitation films Australia coughed up in the 1980s.

lottie_of_millhaven
lottie_of_millhaven
1 month ago

Somehow I’ve never seen this, despite the first one being one of my favorites (and a major turning point for me, that Bauhaus scene was a life changer!). Sounds like I’ll have to remedy this deficiency soon.

Last edited 1 month ago by lottie_of_millhaven