Monday, April 27, 2015

The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death

Runtime: 98 minutes
Release Date: January 2, 2015
Rating: PG-13
Director: Tom Harper

Eve Parker is a school teacher working in London during World War II. After a series of bombings, the headmistress decides to take the children of parents who couldn't leave to Crythin Gifford, the same town from the first film. Along the way, Eve meets a handsome pilot named Harry and later encounters an odd man who seems most displeased at her bringing kids to the town.

The two women take the children from the house from the first movie, so you know this won't end well. Not long after arriving, Eve has a dream that reveals she once had a baby and gave it up. When she wakes, she has an encounter with the mysterious lady in black, who makes comment revealing that she knows about Eve's history.

Though Eve initially doesn't believe in ghosts, she's forced to change her mind after a series of experiences in the old house. One young boy, Edward, shares a closeness with Eve and seems to look at her as his surrogate mother. As his parents died and he no longer speaks, she struggles to maintain that closeness and to protect him, which is hard given that the other kids bully him.

After several of the children die at what appears to be their own hands, Eve locates an old record that tells the story of what happened to the female ghost and why the woman in black haunts the old house. She also discovers that Harry has his own secrets and his own reasons for not wanting to get stuck in the house. As it becomes clear that the woman in black is targeting Edward, Even must fight back to save the child, herself, and her new love.

Oh dear god. I cannot explain how much I disliked The Woman in Black 2. The best word I can find to describe it is long. Despite running less than 100 minutes, it's the type of movie that feels like it takes hours to finish. I literally kept checking the time because I kept thinking that it had to be over, and it seemed like the movie just kept getting longer.

One of the only things it had going for it was its atmosphere. That house is so damn creepy that I think you could set any ghost story there and still have a great background. There were also a few too many jump scenes that tried too hard to scare viewers. Since most of those scenes ended on such a down note, none of the later jump scenes really paid off. As someone who loves older buildings, I got a kick out of the settings, but that was about all I will remember of this one.

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