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The Grudge 2 (Unrated Director's Cut)
DVD disk
02.27.2007 By: Quigles
The Grudge 2 (Unrated Director's Cut) order
Director:
Takashi Shimizu

Actors:
Amber Tamblyn
Edison Chen
Sarah Michelle Gellar

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Sarah Michelle Gellar is (kinda) back for this sequel, with that rascally curse still on the loose. This time around, the new people at risk are a bunch of schoolgirls, Gellar's sister (apparently), an Asian journalist, and some random little boy (no, not that pale kid).
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
In a nutshell, the first half of THE GRUDGE 2 is pitifully mundane, while the second half is nonsensical beyond belief. In terms of style, the direction is pretty spot-on, but there's literally zero tension. You basically have scene after scene of people gaping their mouths in fear as a pale little boy and his floaty mamma randomly appear in various "creative" vicinities. Some of it looks kinda cool, but most of it's just stupid. It's also boring as hell. I kept waiting for the movie to actually make an ounce of sense while connecting the dots between the dozen plus pointless characters. By the time it actually does, I didn't care anymore. I guess that's a good thing though, seeing as how the ending is wholly unsatisfying and lame.

The acting is probably the worst thing about the film. There's an onslaught of these female characters, all of whom are incapable of emoting facial expressions other than the defaults of "sad" and "scared." I would also blame them for their horrible delivery of the dialogue, but then again, the dialogue is pretty awful to begin with.

Irritatingly enough, there are points where the movie seems to be meeting up to its potential, only to drop back down into a state of utter retardation. The basic plot outline is decent enough (I rather liked the interweaving of seemingly unrelated narratives from different points in time), and itís obvious there are some smart minds at work here, but the problem with the film is that nothing seems to matter. All of these characters are worthless and expendable, from the little boy who's ostensibly disconnected from the rest of the film, to the melodramatic and irritating schoolgirl who might as well be asking to be pushed into the mud by her classmates.

The movie's hilarious randomness doesn't help matters. At one point, there's a girl standing blank-faced in a doorway chugging a gallon of milk. Suddenly she starts to upchuck it back into the container. Meanwhile, I sit baffled and confused at what the hell I just witnessed, and more importantly... why?
THE EXTRAS
This Unrated Director's Cut of the film is 6 minutes longer than the theatrical cut, but I'm not at liberty to discuss what's been added (ok, ok - I never saw the theatrical cut). From what I've heard, this version of the movie is actually a lot better than the cut shown in theaters. Trims were made all over, a few scenes were removed, some blood added, etc. Apparently it feels a lot less rushed and the pacing is better. Don't take my word for it though; like I said, I never saw the theatrical cut.

The other notable difference between this set and the DVD for the theatrical cut is that the latter has slightly fewer extras. As such, I will mark all special features exclusive to this Director's Cut with an asterisk.

*Tales From The Grudge (7:56): This is a collection of three shorts, preceded by an introduction by Sam Raimi. In short, it's about some random guy investigating the curse. This seems like it'd be an awesome extra, but it's actually pretty lame.

Cast & Crew Reel Change Montage (8:07): This completely worthless featurette shows cast and crew members having fun during reel changes. Skip it.

*Holding A Grudge: Kayako & Toshio (10:08): A cool featurette regarding the "Grudge" ghosts, how they were cast, and the issues that came with it.

East Meets West (15:03): This featurette is worth a watch. It gives insight regarding the film's attempts to escape Hollywood bastardization while staying true to its J-horror roots, as well as THE GRUDGE's entrance to American cinemas.

The Grudge 2: Storyline Development (11:27): This featurette gives a worthwhile look at how THE GRUDGE 2's story was formed, and

"Ready When You Are, Mr. Shimizu" (13:10): Lame. A bunch of interviews talking about how great the director is. They might as well have been performing fellatio on the guy.

Deleted Scenes: There are 3 deleted scenes worth a look, as well as an alternate ending and epilogue.

There are also 10 Previews.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I thought the original GRUDGE (and by "original," I mean remake) was a decent enough scare-fest, but by no means was it anything special. You could argue that THE GRUDGE 2 has a better story, but the movie's still a dud. There are a few clever moments of creepiness, but hardly any of it's actually frightening. It's mostly just random and frustrating. And worse yet, it's dull.
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