12 September 2004 | CJGlowacki
So you sat through the first "Ju-On : The Curse" and thought it was pretty creepy. Your only complaint was that the ending left you confused and wanting more. Well, be careful what you wish for because here we have "Ju-On 2 : The Curse" and it may leave you wanting less.
For whatever reason, "Ju-On 2" starts off with teacher Shunsuke Kobayashi visiting the home of one of his students. It appears Toshio hasn't shown up in a while. Sound familiar? It should. Because for the first 30 minutes, you are simply watching the last 30 minutes of the first "Ju-On" - shot for shot.
But the real question here is how does this supposed sequel stand up against the original. Well, for starters, it is less confusing. Once you move into the new footage, the movie stays in a linear time frame right up until the end. It even helps in explaining some of the more confusing elements from the first movie.
As for the scares, you get more of the same here and this only serves to make them less effective. When we first saw a ghostly Kayko crawling around in the original, it was totally unexpected and genuinely creepy. However, in the sequel, you would've thought she'd entered the walking stage by now ala a toddler. But no, she's still hugging the ground and moving slower George Romero's dead.
And here is one aspect of these movies, particularly this one, that I find curious. When approached by these ghosts, every character seems to be frightened to the point of where they can no longer at even the most basic level. Running away? Out of the question. Walking away? I don't think so. Screaming for help? Only if you can stop your whimpering to belt one out. For the most part, these scenes do work, and are punctuated with some incredibly effective jump cuts. But there are times when watching a man slowly crawl away from an even slower ghost just seems plain silly.
So, with all that being said, should you give "Ju-On 2 : The Curse" a look? Absolutely - but only if you can somehow seamlessly merge the two movies together and cut out the half hour of repetition.
Rating for "Ju-On : The Curse" [on a 5 star system] : 3 1/2 stars
Rating for "Ju-On 2 : The Curse" [on a 5 star system] : 2 1/2 stars
Rating for both movies combined as one [on a 5 star system] : 3 1/2 stars