I am always rooting for a sequel to try something different instead of just being a dull carbon copy of its predecessor. Don't Breathe 2, the sequel to the intense and incredibly exciting 2016 horror thriller, Don't Breathe, does go in a different direction, but it's an astoundingly wrongheaded direction.
So, remember The Blind Man character from the original film? You know, the psycho killer and rapist? Yeah, him. He's the hero of this second movie. You see, the character is searching for redemption from his awful past, and nothing says redemption more than sadistically murdering a bunch of thugs who break into his house.
It's been years since the events of the first film, and The Blind Man (again played by Stephen Lang in a good performance) has an "adopted" daughter (well played by Madelyn Grace) who is about 13-years-old, and he is very protective of her. And wouldn't you know it, a group a military trained thugs break into his home with the intent of kidnapping his daughter. The reason they want the little girl is pretty ridiculous, but I won't spoil it.
These bad guys are so obnoxious that even their respective haircuts are offensive. They look like gang members left over from Death Wish 3 and The Blind Man couldn't dispatch with them quick enough.
There is a lot of blood and gore, but director Rodo Sayagues, who wrote the original, doesn't know how to execute suspense scenes. Much of the action just lays there. And it's poorly written by Sayagues and the first film's director, Fede Alvarez. The cheap, pedestrian presentation of the material here just doesn't have the strength or the smarts to deal with the redemption of evil.
For a similar movie that is a lot more fun, try the ridiculous action-comedy Blind Fury (1989) starring Rutger Hauer as a blind war veteran who is also a master swordsman.
Don't Breathe 2 is now in theaters.
* ½ stars (Out of four)