"Sequels suck. By definition alone they are inferior films."It may not be all the time, but Jamie Kennedy's quote from "Scream 2" can ring absolutely true for "Book of Shadows - Blair Witch 2," which is an absolutely appalling sequel that should not exist in the first place. The entire experience smacks as unnecessary and useless. And somehow it is directed by acclaimed documentarian Joe Berlinger who previously made the "Paradise Lost" documentaries about young killers.
Let me state that I liked the original "The Blair Witch Project". While I found it's story weak and some of the "actors" a little off, the idea of the original is very strong and unique, where we the viewers saw nothing but the POV of a video and 16mm film camera. (Mike Figgis' "Time Code", which came out around the same time, was another fascinating look at four viewpoints of 90 minutes in Los Angeles, but the same kind of experimental filmmaking that is a fine idea.) The negative reaction to the film was based on multiplex audiences expecting a so called "scary movie" in their plush, 20+ screen megaplex, and did not understand that this was freaky for the subconcious, a film for people who like to think when the last end credit rolls. (Great way you can tell the filmgoer attitude of a person, if they refer to the original film as "Not Scary.")
So how disappointed I was to find the so called sequel "Book of Shadows" (folks, there's no book in this movie, I don't even think the actors in this film can read very well) to be nothing more than a cheap slasher film where the Blair Witch possesses all of a "Blair Witch Hunt" crew and make them all think something else is happening. There's the usual characters in here: goth, audio-video geek, writer, pregnant woman, and a woman practing Wicca. Deep man, very deep.
The problem with the film is that we see everything and are explained in minute detail about everything in the film. The original left a lot of unanswered questions which was the intention. Even the original documentarians didn't know what was going on. There were just a few shots from the camera and everything else is left up to the viewer.Not so in "Book of Shadows," which thinks it knows too much and pumps up the gore, the innuendo and the nudity and makes an absolutely uninteresting and long 90 minute film that will embarass everyone involved, particularily the film's original creators, (Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez) which is too bad, because these days movies could be a bit more experimental and creepier, and these guys knew how.