There were key movies in my life that helped to make me who I am today. Movies that I have loved from the moment the opening credit rolled and still love now. This blog series is about those, My guilty pleasures, my favorites, my escapes. Some were very popular, others not so much. Some of these will have some real life take-aways, others are just for fun.
Here we are with the second in the short-lived franchise following the evil Djinn played by Andrew Divoff. While the first saw a theatrical release and was produced by none other than Wes Craven, this sequel didn’t get quite that kind of billing. So, let’s talk about Wishmaster 2 Evil Never Dies.
Today’s Key Movie:
In classic slasher style the Djinn returns to kill again using the power of wishes. Mistakenly freed during a botched robbery, the Djinn is awakened by Morgana (Holly Fields) only for the Djinn to be sent to prison where he begins to use his abilities on the prisoners themselves. Soon it is up to Morgana to find a way to stop the Djinn from raising an army to destroy mankind.
Why this movie?
Having absolutely loved the first Wishmaster film, I was shocked that the second was given the Made for TV treatment. Even today that treatment meant that it was not a movie that was considered ‘worthy’ of a theatrical release or even direct to video release, indicating that it may not be worth watching all together. Ignoring that subtle warning, I rented Wishmaster 2 Evil Never Dies and was treated with well…this.
Picking up sometime after the events of the first film, the Djinn is freed when the statue containing his Gem is hit with a shotgun blast ultimately setting him loose on humanity once again. The thing about it is, what follows is a clearly low budget film that only slightly resembles it’s predecessor in that there is a Djinn and he certainly grants wishes which do not go over well in any way form or fashion. In fact, I have to wonder if this was originally meant to be a Wishmaster movie or was just a repurposed script altered to fit in the Djinn we saw in the original film.
The story we get is strange and doesn’t really fit the established lore from the first film but then again, this is a sequel so maybe it was trying something different, maybe it would add to the lore….uhm no….not really. Instead well, now I remember why I never watched the remainder of this franchise because oh boy was this one bad.
It’s bad but does it have any redeemable qualities?
Yes, this movie is bad to be fair, what did I expect from a Made for TV release? I mean, you have to take that into consideration right? So with that in mind, it is not really horrible, just bad, like low budget b-movie bad. The plot, what little there is of it, meanders around with the Djinn granting wishes to inmates as he collects souls for his nefarious means. Unlike the last film where someone has to directly wish or ask for something, this time the Djinn takes subtle suggestions instead of direct wishes, for instance a Cop tells him to ‘Freeze’ and he freezes the cop because reasons. However, Much like the last film, each of his wishes are ‘seen’ by Morgana because she freed the Djinn. This, of course, begins to drive her a little nuts and she needs to figure out why she is seeing all of this.
This takes her to Father Gregory played by Paul Johansson who you might recognize from another tv series from the same time period called Highlander The Raven where he played Detective Nick Wolfe. What I found hilarious is that, other than his precisely robes, he looks exactly like he did in The Raven, even down to the rather late 90’s hairstyle. Getting no answers from Nick errr Father Gregory, what does she do? She consults THE INTERNET! Well, a pre-google version of it that is able to find exactly what you are after with pretty generic search parameters. She literally searches for ‘Persian Myths’ and learns pretty much all she needs to. Gregory shows up and the two begin their search for why she is having these dreams of evil and ultimately decides to visit the Djinn in prison because, why not.
What follows is the Djinn trying to fulfill some undefined Prophecy that involves him collecting souls providing viewers with an hour of random wishes like a person literally ‘screwing’ themselves, people being squeezed through prison bars, and on. Now, this could still be interesting right? Maybe there are some significant special effects that give us a gore fest like none other? Right? No, we don’t even get that much, instead we get Andrew Divoff grinning at people with flashes of him in his creature makeup every so often tormenting Morgana in her dreams. Oh and Father Gregory helps her as well because he may or may not be in love with her or something. She also cuts her finger off in an act of penance because of reasons only to then diverge into some quazi-religious theme involving a crucifixion and whatnot. So, there’s that.
Bottom line, Wishmaster 2 Evil Never Dies is no where near the caliber of the first film and actually answers my question as to why this franchise never hit the cult following other slasher films managed. It was marred by crappy sequels that tainted an otherwise fantastic premise. I wouldn’t even say that this one is ‘so bad it’s good’ as there are very few redeeming qualities in this installment. This is a shame because Andrew Divoff is so intriguing as the Djinn yet he is completely wasted in this movie in every way. That being said, we are not done with our venture into this cursed franchise as next week we explore Wishmaster 3 Beyond the Gates of Hell!
OK, where do I get this movie?
As I mentioned in the review of Wishmaster, you can get this via a set that includes the first movie. Honestly, that is the only way I recommend owning this one. Until next week…
Late To The Game 05/06/2021
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