I make no secret about the fact that I really like the first Sinister, even going so far as to say it’s one of my favourite horror films in recent years. It had good scares, great acting, and most importantly for a franchise, interesting mythology that made me want to know more. Because of this, and unlike some other scary films, I was intrigued to see a sequel. What a shame then that they didn’t focus on this mythology at all, and instead made a boring, run of the mill horror.

Sinister 2 Review
Children in a horror film? No way…

Ok, before I get to that, let’s talk about kids (pretty appropriate for the Sinister films). There are a lot of child actors in this film, and for the most part they give fairly decent performances, but there is one big problem. They’ve been made to act like adults. Anybody who’s ever met a child, or even been a child (so most people I guess?) knows that this isn’t how kids act, and there were a few times when it was very jarring.

That aside, the acting is pretty good, especially the bumbling but charming lead James Ransome, whose character name is apparently Ex-deputy So & So? That doesn’t sound right. Anyway, This is pretty much where the praise ends. This film is noticeably cheap. I know these films are cheap to make, but normally you don’t look at the screen and think it. In the first film Bagul is a genuinely scary being, and his look stuck with me for a while, but in this film he looks like a man in rubber suit. A bad rubber suit. A reject from Lordi bad rubber suit. You also see WAY too much of him too soon. From pretty much the opening scene he’s there front and centre.

Sinister 2 Review
It’s good to see somebody trying to keep 75mm alive

There are a few small scares in this film. The old grainy footage scenes are back, and they once again work well, but almost all of the other half decent scares were in the trailer. These scenes are actually representative of another issue this film has, and that’s the fact that it relies very heavily on the viewer having seen the first Sinister. This works in some franchises, but in a low-budget horror it seems an odd choice.

Sinister 2 isn’t the worst horror film I’ve seen this year (that honour goes to Poltergeist), but I was really expecting more.