Released in Japan way back in 2003 and now a cult favourite, 'Ju-On: The Grudge 2' once again involves evil spirits Kayako (Fuji) and her son Toshio (Ozeki) and a powerful curse which leaves people dying in a rage, before moving on to another victim. The original had some atmospherics but a hit-and-miss storyline, not enough scares and a pint-sized villain who looked like he'd be more at home in a school for junior mime artists. And so it is with the second instalment – one for fans of the series but with little for anyone else.
This time around Kayako and Toshio vent their rage on actress Kyoko (Sakai) and the crew shooting a reality TV project in their haunted house. With the story presented out of chronological order, it takes some time to figure out what exactly is going on, and while there are some stylish sequences, chances are you'll shrug your shoulders when the closing credits arrive.
Writer-director Shimizu, who also directed the upcoming US remake and its dire Sarah Michelle Gellar-starring predecessor, does have some good ideas but the problem is that he shows too much: 'Ju-On: The Grudge 2' would have been far scarier if we hadn't seen white flour enthusiast Toshio and his Space Dust-chomping mother. Any shocks are diminished once they appear and as for the killer wig, well, it's not exactly hair-raising.
And if you can forgive that pun, you might enjoy this film.