Dave’s 3-Word Review:
An unnecessary surprise.
Hey guys, remember that one horror film a couple years back called The Pact? If you were like me, you’d probably say something like…maybe? I actually reviewed it when it came back, but couldn’t for the life of me remember what it was about…can you say forgettable? Anyways, to give you a bit of a recap, trust me, it’s needed – the first revolved around a girl named Annie that was investigating a missing girl. She discovers a house that seems to be haunted, but it also had a physical presence as well, equally terrifying – but at the end, she killed it. Now, it’s about to start over again in The Pact 2.
Alright, so this particular film focuses on June Abbott (Camilla Luddington), who turns out to be the daughter of one of the victims in the first film. So when a Judas copycat killer arises with similar MOs as before, June is warned that she may be targeted soon. So she calls in the help of the first film’s protagonist, Annie, to figure everything out. Is it really the Judas Killer, come back to life? Is it a ghost? or is it possibly herself? Each sign seems to point in different directions and nothing seems to match up.
Here’s the main issue with this movie…it hinges on the audience being 100% familiar with the first film – and begins merely weeks afterwards. There is no recap, it’s just like another chapter…and that’s a problem because it’s been two years since the first, forgettable film was released. I had to go back and read my initial review as well as watch the trailer to the first to get some recollection in order to keep watching. I had to, because they start talking about the Judas Killer, and all of his character development, including who the guy even is – is all in the first movie. He’s a huge part of the movie, sure, but that’s a lot of details to remember, and if you haven’t seen the first film, this one is completely useless to you. Even if you have, you might still have trouble remembering details unless the first film was one of your all time favorites – that is a major problem.
As far as what made the first film any good, that I can tell, had a lot to do with mystery and realism. The first film did somewhat of a good job leading the audience on as to what was actually happening. Was it a ghost – or was it something physical and real? It turns out it was both in the first film, but the second film added another element. Is it something paranormal, something physical and real, or is it somehow the lead protagonist causing all of these new murders? I have to say that as far as sequels go, it still did a pretty good job at maintaining the same level of mystery that the first film introduced, as well as continue the story and add some new elements here. However, it just wasn’t enough in the end.
You see, the film is even more forgettable than the first because it feels a bit too much like the first. As forgettable as the first film was, it still had some interesting concepts that felt refreshing in the world of horror – but to do it more than once turns out to be unwelcome. They added more, and slightly different mystery, which is fine, but it just needed something else. It needed those recaps and it needed a bigger, and more different plot than we were given. I think that’s partially why the film feels so long and draggy. It focuses a lot on that mystery – because it knows the mystery is it’s best tool, and all of that focus drags the film on and it feels so utterly slow.
Look, I just found out that this movie even exists. No one asked for it in the first place. Not that they ever asked for the first either. It was fine to have one movie, but they pushed things way too far by making another one.
I maintain that the strongest element of this series has always been the mystery. It may not be the scariest film in the world, but by adding the concept of mystery – and making the audience wonder if it is a haunting or something physical…is enough to at least creep people out and look inside their closets.
The mystery itself was more or less mirroring the first film, and the problem with that is – they solved the mystery in the first film. Sure, they changed things here and there, and added another element to the mystery – but that doesn’t change the fact that the mystery was stronger in the first and should have just been kept there.