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John’s Horror Corner: Terrifier 2 (2022), the brutally mean-spirited evil clown movie that will haunt your gory nightmares… again.

January 17, 2023

MY CALL: After watching this you’ll feel like you need a bath and a confession booth. Top choice for fans of brutal, goretastic and mean-spirited horror and for anyone who claims they “can’t be shocked anymore.” The performance of the villain continues to honor part 1. I was truly slack-jawed-wowed by the special effects team. MORE MOVIES LIKE Terrifier 2: Well, obviously Terrifier (2016). Then The Sadness (2021)… maybe Adam Chaplin (2011) and No Reason (2010). For more mainstream brutally mean-spirited movies, try The Texas Chainsaw Massacre films, Wolf Creek (2005), The Hills Have Eyes (2006), Hatchet (2006), or even The Strangers (2008, 2018) or The Purge (2013) movies. For more evil clown movies, try Stephen King’s It (1990, 2017), Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988), Stitches (2012), Scary or Die (2012) and Clown (2014).

If you enjoyed the goretastic, destitute meanness of Terrifier (2016), then fear not. For Art continues to deliver from scene one as he fragments, macerates and pulverizes a man’s skull in gooey, graphic glory before yanking out the victim’s long-vein-bundled eye to jam into his socket and replace his own. I am more than happy to simply “find more of the same” in sequels, but this sequel immediately finds new and creative ways to utterly gross out and shock audiences.

In this sequel, Sienna (Lauren LaVera) joins Allie (Casey Hartnett; What We Found) and Brooke (Kailey Hyman) to a Halloween party one year after Art’s previous massacre. No shock, Art is somehow alive again and begins resumes massacring people. Only this Halloween his killing spree crosses Sienna’s family and to save her brother she’ll have to face Art on her own.

Brooke is done-dirty in a seriously mean-ass death scene. Poor Allie gets it the worst, though. So sinisterly macabre; like something out of Leatherface’s wet dream. This movie features some of the goriest scenes I’ve ever seen in a movie so nearly mainstream. Adam Chaplin (2011) and No Reason (2010) are incredibly violent and gory, but tread further from mainstream attention and accessibility. As far as more mainstream movies go, The Sadness (2021) comes close-ish while really not even being in the same ballpark.

Terrifier 2 capitalizes on gore in the most vile ways. Among them are putrefied female bodily functions, squeezing and toying with guts, a jaw-droppingly intense scalping scene that rivals Maniac (1980), bruuuuutal limb-breaking and limb-ripping, flesh-peeling and face-tearing, a wild celebration of crotch stabbing and genital tearing, and so more.

This movie essentially has a “theme” of intense skull, eyeball and head trauma. I caught myself mouthing the word wow so many times in gleeful shock at the boundaries being pushed by the effects team. So much extensive imagery of mutilation. This is so not for the weak-stomached. I was truly slack-jawed-wowed by the special effects team.

A pleasant addition, we find a twisted young girl Clown of the same makings as Art. She manages to look even more disturbing than Art, with every shot of her effectively off-putting. Neither of them talk… ever. They just offer unnerving facial expressions and occasionally mime their sick intentions.

The finale fight doesn’t measure up to the outrageous violence, shock or gore of the earlier scenes… but how could it? I still enjoyed every bit of it. And this is really a hard movie to end. It’s full-tilt meat grinder scene after scene, and eventually Sienna has her brother and the credits roll. So overall, I was so splendidly pleased with this immense piece of shock cinema. I didn’t know how one could possibly continue to please audiences after part 1, but writer/director Damien Leone (All Hallow’s Eve, Terrifier) and his Art portrayer David Howard Thornton (Terrifier, Stream) have certainly done it, finding just enough ways to tweak Art’s evil and murder with more creative zest than before. To that end, the entire cast fares well for us, and the increased production value was also a welcome upgrade.

After watching this you’ll feel like you need a bath and a confession booth. Dare I say, I don’t know how Leone could possibly do more than ‘more of same’ for a part 3… but he certainly proved my expectations wrong about part 2. Bravo!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 18, 2023 9:11 am

    I typically like the suspense aspect of slasher movies. Gore just to have gore isn’t usually my thing. But I talked myself into watching the first one and have pretty much talked myself into watching this one now after reading your review. Thanks! I think, haha. But like I felt with the first, I can’t get over the feeling I’m being unfaithful to Captain Spaulding.

    • John Leavengood permalink
      January 18, 2023 7:24 pm

      But how did you like these movies? Are these a guilty pleasure perhaps?

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