#146 -- "B" Challenge: Boogeyman 2 (2007)

Director: Jeff Betancourt
Rating: 3.5/5

If you've seen the first Boogeyman, you know that it was about a man with an intense fear of that monster in the closet. That fear eventually drove him to madness, and he was placed inside a mental facility that specialized in treating phobias. Eventually, he committed suicide in that facility. In this sequel, we follow siblings Henry and Laura. When they were children, they saw their parents get murdered. They were young, so they weren't quite sure what to think of it. They were both sure that the boogeyman was the culprit. They grew up, and Henry ended up in that same facility. After what I think was three months he was released with a clean bill of health. He planned on moving to San Francisco for a new job, to start over without that fear hanging over his head. Laura, who was thought to be the strong one of the two, was very upset by this. She was constantly having nightmares about the boogeyman. She said that he waited until they were separated, and that she didn't want him to leave her because she couldn't do it on her own. Why she couldn't just move with him, I'm not sure, but she ended up admitting herself into the facility. At first, she was worried that she'd be stuck with a bunch of crazy people, but she learned that they weren't crazy at all and started making friends. Mark (David Gallagher from the TV show Seventh Heaven; interestingly, the man in the first movie was in that show with him) was terrified of the dark. Paul was a germ-o-phobe. Darren was agoraphobic, meaning he was afraid of the outside world, and people in general. Nikki was afraid of getting fat, so she puked her dinner into a bucket every night. And then there was Allison. She said that she was afraid of "losing control," so she cut herself. It was something about most people dealing with their problems internally, but that was impossible for her. She cut herself, making the problem external so that she could deal with it. She also said that she was afraid to stop cutting herself, which doesn't make a lot of sense to me, but I guess some people are like that. Anyways, when her new friends started dying in ways that she alone knew were not accidents, Laura was sure that the boogeyman had followed her. The psychiatrist, Dr. Ryan (Gabrielle from Xena: Warrior Princess) had a little fear of her own: turning out like her schizophrenic mother. But she was a good lady, and she really wanted to help the kids. The doctor, Dr. Allan (Jigsaw, from the Saw series), had an affinity for helping patients who suffered with what he called "boogey-phobia". He treated Tim (from the first movie), Henry, Laura, and a whole lot of other people. He had sort of unorthodox ways of helping them deal with their fears, though. He locked Henry in a closet and told him he couldn't come out until he would admit that there was no boogyeman in there. He had to face his fear, dead on, before he would be let out. So, as the kids were picked off one by one, it seemed that the doctor might have been taking things one step further. He was intent on making them face their fears.

Each one of them died in a way that somehow involved what they were afraid of. Mark was killed after panicking when the lights were cut off. Darren, who was afraid to get close to people, had his heart cut out. Mrs. Ryan, who was afraid of being schizophrenic like her mother (staring at the wall and mumbling nonsense), was turned into a mumbling fool. She wasn't actually murdered, but she was forced to face her fear. The others all died in similar but different ways: they had to face their fears before they were killed. So, of course it was the doctor, right? He had to cure them somehow? But things are hardly ever what they seem. Turned out, Dr. Allan had a fear of his own that he wasn't quite ready to admit. The movie took a turn, and the killer was somewhat unexpected. The reason behind the killings was a little confusing at first, but once I thought about it, it made some sense. I think it was about facing your fears, and them becoming them. And after that, forcing others to do the same. Or, as the killer said, showing them what they're really scared of.

It's been a while since I saw the first movie, but I believe it was actually about the boogeyman: the monster in the closet. This one, though, is more about the fear of the boogeyman rather than the boogeyman himself. Laura was convinced that the boogyeman was killing her friends. She was terrified. But in the end, there was no boogeyman at all, other than the one that walks among us every day: our fellow man. It tells us that we shouldn't fear the monster in the closet. What we should really be afraid of is each other. We can turn the lights on, and the boogeyman will disappear; but there's no getting rid of the evil that lives right next door.

Boogeyman 2 was actually pretty good. What I didn't like was the lack of an actual boogeyman. I mean, that's false advertisement, isn't it? Don't tell me a movie is about the boogeyman when it's actually about a serial killer. What was supposed to be (or could have been) an eery supernatural horror movie turned into a slasher film. Don't get me wrong, I love me some slashers. But I like some boogey-people too. I did like the mask the killer wore; it was pretty creepy and neat looking. The gore was pretty good, and the cast did a great job. It had some suspenseful moments, though not very many. So, it was a good movie, but I would have liked to have seen a monster somewhere.

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