Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes
Siblings Sienna (Lauren LaVera) and Jonathan (Elliott Fullam) haven’t had it easy since the death of their father, and living with their mother Barbara (Sarah Voigt) is no picnic. She shows a distinct lack of understanding for what her children are going through, and never believes them, even when they’re telling the truth. Jonathan is blamed for things that happened at his school, such as the presence of a dead animal, and no one believes him when he says he’s seen Art the Clown (David Howard Thornton), the supposedly dead serial killer.
Halloween is coming. Sienna has been working hard on her costume, based on a character her father drew
in a book of sketches. Jonathan plans to go as Art the Clown, although his mother insists that he not do so. But strange things are beginning to happen, including the destruction of Sienna’s costume wings in an unexplained fire in her room that her mother blames on her. But Sienna knows she never lit the candles. What is going on? She is forced to find a cheap replacement, as there is no time to make a new set, and while at the Halloween shop, she spies someone who resembles the clown. And he is creepy as hell. She leaves the shop safely but the clerk is not so lucky.
Both Sienna and Jonathan have seen Art with a companion – a young girl in similar clown make-up, who looks just as crazy as he does. But no one else seems to see them. Sienna tells her mother she is going to a friend’s house on Halloween, but she dresses up and goes with her to a bar, where not only is she drinking, but her friend slips some molly into her drink, so she is not exactly thinking clearly. Jonathan’s mom berates him harshly again for something he never did, and he runs out of the house.
The body count is rising. Sienna freaks out at the club with her friend and her boyfriend at the sight of the little girl, so they decide to take her home. But she gets a call from Jonathan, asking for her help, and telling her to go to the old carnival…to the Terrifier ride. The boyfriend offers to drive her, and while she looks for her brother, they wait in the car…
The second movie is every bit as gory and visceral as the first, but we see more of Art, who is a strange and yet compelling character. Not likeable, certainly not. I can honestly say I like Hannibal Lecter, despite his unusual culinary habits, but Art the Clown? Never. Creepy beyond belief, and well played by David Howard Thornton. How creepy is it that he can convey his creepiness without speaking a single word?
This movie is certainly not for the faint at heart. One scene involves handing out Halloween candy to unsuspecting trick-or-treaters in a hollowed-out human head! I am still left wondering about so many things. Where did Art come from, and why does he do the things he does? I think the little girl was explained somewhat. But there is also the question of Sienna and Jonathan’s father, who supposedly killed himself by running his car into a transformer and burning up. I wonder if he really died? And how did he come up with the sketches in his book, including that of the clown and his daughter in her costume? Look for the woman from the first film whose face was torn up beyond repair. She’s living in an institution now, and we are not done with her by any means. In fact, from what I understand, there will be a third and fourth movie, which should conclude the series. That remains to be seen.
I have to say also that the film took a bit of an unexpected left turn toward the end, one I still don’t get, and for which I am rating it down. I’ll give this film 3.5 Stars.