CHROMESKULL: LAID TO REST 2 (2012)
Dir. Robert Hall 89 mins
UK Release: 3rd June 2013
Laid To Rest was a shining light in an overcrowded horror market. Released in 2009, and directed by the make-up wizard Robert Hall it gave a much needed boost to the slasher genre, and proved that with first class practical effects and a villain to cower from, you can make a damn fine horror movie.
The sequel, which bizarrely drops the ‘Laid To Rest’ title (except on the disc and the film – go figure) and is called simply ‘Chromeskull’ by UK distributor OMG, picks up immediately at the end of the first movie. We are reminded how Tommy and ‘the girl’ head off together leaving a scene of carnage at the convenience store where they ‘killed’ Chromeskull. Straight away we find that ‘the girl’ is a different actress (Allison Kyler) but returning as Tommy is the excellent Thomas Dekker.
Whereas you might presume LTR2 would go the predictable way of seeing Tommy and ‘the girl’ regroup and then go through the motions to defeat (the soon to be resurrected) Chromeskull once more, the film throws a cog into that wheel straight away by introducing us to Preston (Brian Austin Green), who wants a piece of Chromeskull’s action and begins by violently butchering ‘the girl’ to death.
We soon discover that Preston has rescued Chromeskull, despite his very deceased state at the end of the first film, and with his team of surgeons seem to have stabilized him. Preston wastes no time in gloating to Chromeskull about donning his mask in order to kill ‘the girl’, showing him mobile phone footage and promising that he can “tie up all the loose ends”.
Fast forward three months and we are introduced to Jessica (Mimi Michaels), a young girl who is diagnosed with a rare eye condition which leads to the onset of blindness. Jessica is busy creating video diaries talking about losing her vision, and one night as she plans her next diary with a friend, she senses an unwelcome visitor to her house. What part does she play though in Preston’s scheme to aid Chromeskull and where now is Tommy?
After watching the excellent Calum Waddell documentary ‘Slice & Dice’ the other week, it reignited my hunger for the slasher movie, whilst also (save for ‘Hatchet’) made me a little despondent at the mediocrity of the average slasher today. The LTR franchise however is a jewel in the crown, and LTR2 easily matches the original – some may even say it eclipses it.
Chromeskull is a first class villain for a variety of reasons. Firstly there is the imposing frame of Nick Principe, secondly the iconic mask and thirdly his menacing canon of weaponry. It’s the application of all this coupled with the make-up genius of Robert Hall and crew that provides us with some of the most wince-inducing gore that tests our gag reflexes to the max. Add to this such a solid actor as Thomas Dekker as well as the introduction of Preston, played by Brian Austin Green, and we have everything to put this movie in the slasher hall of fame.
7.5 out of 10
DVD Extras: None