Video Game Adaptations: Alone in the Dark 2

You know, for the life of me, I cannot possibly think of one rational reason for this film to exist. Dr. Boll’s original was a steaming sack of crap that died on its ample arse at the box office, so I cannot genuinely believe that anyone was asking for a sequel. I know the original was number one in the German box office on DVD for a whole three weeks (to quote Alanis Morissette: “Fuck you Germany”) but, well, that’s Germany and they’ve got no fucking taste at all when it comes to culture. I know I hammered this home unsubtly last time, but I think it’s a bit fucking rich for the rest of the world to have a piss poor sequel inflicted on us because the nation with the taste bypass that committed the ongoing catalogue of atrocities that is The Scorpions liked it. For less than a month.

Pah, Germany clearly sucks,

Alone in the Dark 2 was, and I know this may come as a huge shock, unable to secure the services of Christian Slater, Tara Reid and Stephen Dorff. It’s also an infinitely better film than the original. However, being better than the original still doesn’t mean that it’s very good. It is, and I know this won’t be a shock, actually crap. Basically, writer/directors Michael Roesch, Peter Scheerer threw out everything to do with the first film, which is a hugely wise decision. However, having launched the baby out with the bath water it seems that they didn’t have a fucking clue what to replace it with. So, this time round we’ve got what is allegedly a video game adaptation, sequel that ignores the original film completely and also ignores every single feature of the games. We’ve got no Shadow world, no monsters, no survival horror etc.

Should have stuck to modelling, love.

So what do we have? Well, I only watched this recently, and I cannot remember a damned thing about it. However, a brief perusal of the internets has reminded me enough: We’ve got a scary evil witch that is somehow hurt by light. That’s original, I don’t think. In fact, I’m sure that some derivation of this was the plot of the execrable Darkness Falls. I find this confusing, seriously, as why would someone rip off a film as terrible as that one? Nevertheless, to be fair, we’ve also got a magic dagger that “marks” you and allows you to be possessed by the spooky witch thingummy. It’s all a bit lame, when it comes down to it.

Cash that fucking cheque, Lance.

Nevertheless, despite this being an STV sequel that nobody asked for to a truly hideous film that almost everybody hated, they did clearly rifle Dr. Boll’s contact book and managed to secure the services of a first-rate schlock cast. We’ve got Bill Mosely as a witch hunter, Lance Henriksen as the “is he bad, no actually he’s good” witch hunter, Danny Trejo doing something or other that I can’t remember, Rachel Specter (last seen in the severely underrated Deep in the Valley and the shitty Prom Night remake) as the female lead, and weirdly Bond villain Rick Yune as Carnaby. That’s right, somehow between the two movies Carnaby managed to morph from Caucasian Christian Slater to heavily Asian Rick Yune. THAT MAKES NO SENSE WHATSOEVER!!! Performance wise, Mosely, Trejo and Lance are clearly fucking cashing cheques, and who can blame them. Specter is trying hard, but I suspect that casting her as a porn actress in Deep in the Valley was the end of her range, but the film dies because Rick Yune is just a totally charisma less lead. It doesn’t help that a lot of it is him writhing around in pain, but really, he’s not a great screen presence. He may be a good henchman (although Die Another Day would suggest otherwise, but nobody came out of that shitburger in credit), but he’s sure as fuck not a lead actor.

What we can't see is that she's whispering "what the fuck are we doing here" in Yune's ear. Don't know why, it's not as if he's likely to have the answer.

Moreover, the central plot device of this film doesn’t work. Basically, because having a “magic knife” that transfers the witches mark to the character you need it to on touch is a terrible idea. Particularly as eventually there will be a need for one character to actually be able to, er, touch the fucking thing with no bad consequences. It’s no shock here that that character is Lance. However, his reason for being able to touch it? “That witch crap don’t work on me”. Well, Lance, I have to agree with you. It don’t, and in this film it’s not working on me either. Unless the magic spell is to bore me to sleep, in which case it’s having a remarkable success. That is simply shocking writing, and moreover it is actually revoltingly lazy. Give me 5 minutes and a few pints of Ireland’s finest and I can come up with a better line than that.

I can’t actually be bothered to continue talking about this film. It’s PG13 so there’s no gore, and the very least they could have done is have Specter strip down butt naked for a gratuitous shower scene. However, this too is absent so there is no nudity either. I know neither of these are integral to a good film, but they can be integral to making a bad film passable.

This is about as scary as it gets. Which is not very.

Needless to say, as it lacks even the barest minimum required to be watchable, I don’t rate Alone in the Dark 2, and I certainly do not recommend it. Unless you really want to be bored for 91 interminable minutes. It isn’t the worst film that I’ve ever seen, and it isn’t even the worst film on this list, but it’s not a film that I ever want to return to and having seen it recently it isn’t a film I remember either. I give it 1 Chang out of 4 for basic competence and being better than Boll’s effort, but overall, there’s no word more fitting for a summary of this film than “Avoid”.

Believe it or not, there is a plus side to this film, and that’s that I never again have to waste valuable brain space even thinking about anything called “Alone in the Dark” again. Which, I suppose is a bit of a result. Now, does anyone know where I can download some Earthworm Jim cartoons to get the taste of this rubbish out of my mouth?

Until next time,

Jarv

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About Jarv

Workshy cynic, given to posting reams of nonsense on the internet and watching films that have inexplicably got a piss poor reputation.

39 responses to “Video Game Adaptations: Alone in the Dark 2”

  1. just pillow talk says :

    Before your reviews, I’d never even heard of these two movies before.

    And I think there’s plenty of good reasons why…

  2. koutchboom says :

    I’ll never understand DTV. Like how it works, how its profitable, who makes it, how they are made?

    Its just odd.

    I mean I could understand if DTV movies came out like every once in a while. Or they were indy movies picked up and just never put into theaters. But the fact is that there are millions of them. DTV always outweighs the amount of theatrical films getting DVD releases on any given week.

    Its hit odd anomaly. While with the introduction of SyFy’s movie of the week recently at least all those films can be accounted for. But still thats only a small ass faction of it all.

    Even lame rip off are half assed sequels I can understand. I even to an extent get why this movie was made. But the whole DTV side of the movie making business I just don’t fully undertand. I mean I guess if they only have budgets less than $500,000, but still….$500,000 is $500,000. Then add in any sort of marketing/distributing. Its fucking odd.

  3. koutchboom says :

    Ohh you saw Deep in the Valley! I saw a trailer for that a couple months back, it looked funny. Did you do a review for it?

  4. Jarv says :

    The profit margin is huge, and you get paid in a different way, that’s why.

    You sell in bulk in advance, or license out- basically you get paid a profit of about £3 per disc regardless of how many actual people buy it. This is why the bargain bins exist.

    This must have cost more than $500,000 by the way. The cast alone must be coming up to at least $300,000.

    • koutchboom says :

      Yeah I figured 500,00 was low. I figured between 1-5 million for most. I mean its just odd the staggering amount of them. You think there would be some sort of law of dimishing returns in there somewhere.

  5. Droid says :

    Maybe DTV gets some of its money back from being shown on cable?

    • Jarv says :

      Yes, it will do. It will also be licensed by territory.

    • koutchboom says :

      I thought that, but still I wonder how much of it really gets shown on Cable? I guess in the end it all may, but its not on all the time. I’d say theatrical release films get more air time then DTV stuff.

  6. Frank Marmoset says :

    I gave up on this one halfway through back when I was trying to do those Uwe Boll double feature reviews. So congratulations for making it all the way to the end of both films.

    Same thing happened when I tried to watch both House Of The Deads. There’s something for you to look forward to.

  7. Frank Marmoset says :

    EARTHWORM JIM!

    He’s such a groovy guy!

    EARTHWORM JIM!

    He rockets through the sky!

    I think that’s how it went. Anyway, there’s a complete Earthworm Jim torrent on The Pirate Bay, but it’s two and a half gigalowhatsits with only nine seeders, so it’ll probably take ages to download.

    • Jarv says :

      I’m not sure I want to watch the whole thing. Just some samples of it

    • DocPazuzu says :

      Nine seeders is usually a pretty good number. I say go for it.

      • Jarv says :

        I’m actually saving Earthworm Jim for when this series really gets me down.

        I watched Bring me the head of Earthworm Jim last night on Youtube, and it’s so fucking weird- funny as hell, but completely demented. Someone must have been on something for that.

  8. Frank Marmoset says :

    Of all of Uwe Boll’s videogame adaptations, I still think BloodRayne is probably the most watchable. It’s not good, but it is hilariously inept, and Michael Madsen just does not give a fuck in that film. He gives one of the most lazy, uninterested performances I’ve ever seen by any actor.

    There was a funny interview with Guinevere Turner in a documentary about scriptwriting where she talks about writing BloodRayne. Basically, she wrote a very rough first draft and sent it to Boll so she could get his input on how they could start knocking into shape, and he said: “It’s great! We start filming in a week!” Oh, Uwe, you funny bugger.

  9. DocPazuzu says :

    Thanks, Jarv. That’s another unwatched movie in my collection that will remain so until I don’t remember this review any more.

    I’ve started browsing usenet now so my pile of unwatched trash is growing at an alarming rate. Nice to be able to disregard certain titles based on your expertise.

    • Jarv says :

      This isn’t offensive at all- have you seen the original? Well compared to the Boll Movement this is actually really good.

      However, in reality, it’s really boring full of paycheck collecting actors and utterly pointless. I wasn’t joking, I can’t remember it at all now.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        Yes, I have seen the original. It’s so bad that Tara Reid refused to take her bra off in order to save her dignity during that awful sex scene. Dr. Boll even bad-mouthed her for not getting nekkid in his film.

        Still, I am a bit in awe of Dr. Boll. His casts are astonishing. Has anyone asked any of these big name actors why they were in a Boll flick? There’s something very weird going on…

      • Jarv says :

        Wasn’t it filmed around about the time she was going through the botched tit job. I was rude about her keeping the top on, and then Mrs. Jarv told me about it.

        I don’t know how Tara Reid can make a claim to dignity, though. Unless it’s in comparison to her sister who makes a living as a Paris Hilton double.

      • Jarv says :

        Also, so far, Alone in the Dark is my first Orang of Doom in this series, Doom got the Palin of stupidity for being hideous and dumb, and Resident Evil got the Horny Pooch of Fail.

        AITD was so shit that I could not be arsed to get an amusing photo.

        Next Orang of Doom candidate is RE: Apocalypse, which I fucking detest.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        Was her tit job really that bad? I saw the dress slip pics and they seemed all right in a porny sort of way.

        As for her dignity, I think even she realized that she had to do something to retain a fraction of her immortal soul after Dr. Boll seared her for life.

      • Jarv says :

        Yeah, it was completely botched according to Mrs. Jarv.

        Took years of corrective surgery and the fat deposits in her body are all misshapen and fucked up as a result of the lipo they had to do to save her tits.

        This, to me, sounds Uwe exacting his pound of flesh.

      • DocPazuzu says :

        I’m guessing that if you ever see Megiddo, it will warrant your first ever Palin/Ramirez combo. That’s the kind of film it is. If it weren’t so fucking funny an Orang/Poodle combo might have been more appropriate.

      • Jarv says :

        I need to see that. I’m just assembling The Roost for 2005’s post millennial horror, and then I’m getting that.

    • Jarv says :

      Oh, and I bet you my review stays with you longer than the film does.

      Honestly, I had to look up the plot and I only saw it two days before I wrote the review.

      and I was sober

  10. ThereWolf says :

    I’m so pleased you watched that and I didn’t.

    Also, I’m on the Megiddo trail…

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