I Spit On Your Grave 2 (2013) Review
Written by: Neil Elman, Thomas Fenton
Directed by: Steven R. Monroe
The 1978 controversial cult classic I Spit On Your Grave was a success mainly due to the notorious and realistic rape scene that seems to last forever, you can take that for what it’s worth. The inevitable 2010 remake was surprisingly effective despite the fact that the stylish camera work lessened it’s impact but it was the satisfying over-the-top ways that she enacted her revenge that made the movie so damn fun. The new protagonist Katie is a poor model, as opposed to the previous one’s writer, who naively responds to a free modeling shoot that ends up resulting in violence.
Katie is not only raped but she is also kidnapped and used as a sex slave in Bulgaria. Throughout the first hour she is sexually assaulted several times (once with an electric rod), pissed on, beaten and left for dead. Take a guess what happens next. No really… take a guess. She survives and enacts her revenge in the typical rape/ revenge movie sort of way. Only without any creativity or originality.
Let the un-erotic nudity and murder-fest commence.
Good Acting From Lead – Jemma Dallender plays the main character of Katie and she gives a strong performance despite some of the corny lines that she is forced to recite. Also given the fact that she is naked throughout the film and expected to respond to torturous events that unfold, she has to be a confident and strong actor to be so vulnerable. She is very believable when she screams out in agony or for help and is someone the audience can root for. You just want to grab her character and console her. Well… either that or help her slaughter the rapists like pigs.
Bad Guys Are Unlikable – This movie does nothing for Bulgarians because this movie paints them as being cruel and vicious scumbags who treat woman like objects that they can violate. To the films credit the bad guys have no redeeming qualities and are easily hated by the audience, thereby making the revenge scenes that much more satisfying. The audience can’t wait to see them all die.
Torture Scenes Way To Long – Poor little model Katie. She spends almost the entire movie being used as a living sex doll that is abused time and time again, before getting discarded like trash. The first rape attack scene was surprisingly effective, especially with her heroic neighbor who is stabbed multiple times and forced to watch her be violated while he bleeds to death. But after Katie is kidnapped and turned into a sex slave things go from disturbing to not even enjoyable. We get it… the people who are torturing her deserve to be murdered brutally. I mean the original The Last House On The Left featuring a girl being forced into wetting herself, and in this film the girl is literally pissed on. After a while the torturing of Katie just becomes repetitive.
Revenge Unsatisfying – If the audience gets forced into watching an innocent girl get tortured for the a little over an hour there better be a good pay-off when she gets her revenge. In the 1978 original we got a disturbing scene in which a male in a bathtub is violated with a knife while treated to grand opera music that tones out his screams. In the remake we get over-the-top and savage devices which were entertaining as hell, albeit slightly unbelievable. In this movie we get a drowning in a poop-filled toilet and a ball crushing scene that while gross and disgusting is in no way original. She doesn’t even stalk them, she just appears, kills and moves on.
Pointless Side Characters – Katie briefly escapes and meets a Detective who is the definition of completely useless. Not only does he release her, accidentally mind you, back to her tormentors but he also comes to her rescue when she needs him the least, leading to the ending scene with him that is entirely pointless. Maybe if he had more of a role in the previous proceedings that scene could have meant something. There is also a Priest character that is thrown into the mix. Why is he even in this movie? He literally does nothing.
I Spit On Your Grave 2 seems like a cheap marketing ploy to cash-in on the surprising success of the recent remake. The rape/ revenge plot line is running a little stagnant at this point in the series and they fail at even copying this formula successfully. For an audience member to be expected to watch an innocent girl be tortured to such a degree and then not satisfy the revenge fantasy by rushing through it so quickly is an insult to the audience. I hope that this film is the nail in the coffin for any future sequels.
Do yourself a favor and avoid I Spit On Your Grave 2, the 1978 original is still far superior.