November 12, 2023

THE NUN II: An Equally Forgettable Sequel

THE NUN II (Blu-ray)
2023 / 110 min
Review by Josey, the Sudden Cat🙀

I know I saw The Nun, but aside from the image of the title character, I can't remember a damn thing about it. And even that image stems more from her brief but terrifying introduction in The Conjuring 2. Sometimes the only thing worse than a bad horror movie is one that leaves no impression.

Now here’s The Nun II, featuring returning characters I have absolutely no memory of, along with a few new faces for Valak to torment and terrify. Most of this one takes place in a Catholic girls’ school in France. Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga), who I forgot saved the day in the first film, is ordered to once again square off against Valak. Her old friend, Maurice (Jonas Bloquet), who I also forgot was possessed by Valak at the end of The Nun, is working there as a groundskeeper…still possessed.

Valak shows up early and often (as do other creatures doing her bidding), mostly emerging from the murky darkness, which was scary as hell in The Conjuring 2, but happens here so frequently that we’re more-or-less expecting it. The same can be said about the plethora of noisy jump-scares. There’s some perfunctory exposition about Valak’s past and how she might be defeated - as well as a couple of flashbacks to remind us that Maurice is possessed - but most of the actual story elements feel like afterthoughts.

"So are you gonna buy a magazine or not?"
The main emphasis is on CG-driven spectacle, especially during the fiery, destructive final act. Everything is slickly made and the performances are serviceable, but the film is seldom involving. There isn’t a single scene, character or image that is likely to resonate after the end credits roll. Even Valak herself is demystified to the point where she ain’t all that intimidating. She was a lot scarier when we knew nothing about her.

Ultimately, we’ve seen all of this before…probably in The Nun, but I can’t be sure since it left no impression whatsoever. The Nun II doesn’t either, so if nothing else, at least the franchise is consistent. But unless it’s the first horror movie you’ve ever seen, every aspect of the film is utterly forgettable.


FEATURETTES - The Nun II: Demon in Paradise (location shooting); Handcrafted Nightmares (covers some of the practical effects).


No comments: