Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000)
Chosen by James Bloodworth who had this to say: 'Quickly pushed into production on the wave of Blair Witch mania, I think I'm alone in thinking that this is potentially a better film. Wisely not trying to emulate it's predecessor, it takes a different view and gives us a mild horror that bases the film around a tourguide taking people around sites used in the original film. It's a clever idea but doesn't really work, this was Director Joe Berlinger first and apparently only film and it does show. Good ideas aren't really built on, the film gets a bit plodding but still builds to what I think was a relatively interesting climax.'
The first 3 minutes are actually quite interesting, referencing the effect of the first film on the local townsfolk and promising a somewhat clever, little meta, sequel. However that all stops, barring the (very occasional) odd joke very quickly to settle into a kids in peril movie with little to distinguish it from a thousand straight to video snorefests.
This movie has a lot in common with Mazes and Monsters (film 18) in that it feels like a ode to the evils of drug use (bunch of kids go into the woods, get stoned, dance around naked and kill some people - happens all the time) and Wicca but is confused in it's message. It constantly, repitively moans at the squares for not getting witches and magic being about nature and not evil but then seems to ignore all that bluff to deal in the stereotypes it decries (particularly galling as this comes from the director of Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills)
In fact the film is full of forgotten or unexamined ideas. A character is introduced, mockingly, as being psyhic. Exhibits actual psychic power (or is just a good con artist). And that's it. Nothing is made of it (it potentially reveals one of the characters fates after the movie ends, I guess, depending on whether that State has the death penalty or not). One character has a past in a mental asylum, affects the movie not one bit, except to have some silly flashbacks to him bouncing around a padded cell.
The gore (what very little there is) is silly and shot horribly (remember kids don't take drugs - you will dance around naked and kill some people), the acting terrible (Kim Director as a Goth is passable everyone else is nails down a blackboard) and the film a mess.
It was suggested I should have lied and said I had seen this film already to avoid it but I play by the rules (you know? the ones set up by me so it's not like anyone would care anyway), and I feel richer for it, no matter the film (we shall see if I'm worn down on that before the end of Feb let alone the year).