Made six years after the success of the original film, 1994's Night Of The Demons 2, directed by Australian filmmaker Brian Trenchard-Smith (the same man who gave us such classics as Escape 2000, The Man From Hong Kong and of course, Stunt Rock) begins at a Catholic high school lorded over by Father Bob (Rod McCary) and Sister Gloria (Jennifer Rhodes). As Halloween is fast approaching, the girls - Bibi (Cristi Harris), Terri (Christine Taylor) and Shirley (Zoe Trilling) - are looking forward to the dance, so is their roommate, meek Melissa (Merle Kennedy), who everyone calls Mouse. See, she's a bit timid due to the fact that not only did her parents kill themselves a year or two back, but she just so happens to be the sister of Angela (Amelia Kinkade), the girl who threw the party in the first movie that started all of this trouble.
At any rate, the girls are out on the tennis court one day and Sister Gloria catches one of them monkeying around with one of the boys and that's it, they're grounded. No dance for them. So when Shirley gets an invite from Rick (Rick Peters) for a house party that night, she talks her friends into sneaking out with her to go. Little do they know that the party is going to be held at Hull House and that demonic Angela is still there, more than happy to take on all comers brave enough to voyage inside. When it's found out that the girls have left, one of the boys (Bobby Jacoby), with an unusual interest in demonology, eventually convinces Father Bob and Sister Gloria to do something but when they arrive at the house, they realize just how far gone things are...
Right from the early stages of the film you more or less know what you're getting into with this one. When the movie begins, a pair of missionaries knock on the door of a very familiar and seemingly abandoned old house. No one in their right mind would try to evangelize here, but that doesn't stop our intrepid soul savers from giving it their best shot. Of course Angela, in human form, opens the door and lets them in but they don't last long, before you know it she's done here thing and we're off and running. Where do we go from there? To the school where we see the boys standing around in their underwear peering and leering through a set of binoculars at the girls undressing in front of the window across the way. No more than ten minutes in and we've already been delivered the requisite sex and violence we expect from a movie like this.
As trashy and dopey as it all is, however, Trenchard-Smith's sense of humor shines through and makes this one a lot of fun. It takes a lot of clichés to the extreme, running with them so that they're no longer just a cliché but instead the basis for some amusing gags in the film. A good example of this is the character of Sister Gloria, the typically stern nun who wanders the hallway with a ruler in her hand. She doesn't just use this to slap students as, say, 'the Penguin' in The Blues Brothers does, but actually takes it with her to Hull House and uses it to fence her demon opponents. The same sort of ridiculous extreme applies to some of the sex scenes in the movie as well. When Rick reaches for a possessed Shirley's exposed knockers, they morph into hands and assault him and during a rendezvous in the back seat of a car Angela uses her hand to 'massage' Terri's boyfriend, though he initially thinks it's Terri doing the deed and not the demoness.
As such, the movie doesn't play too seriously, nor does it try to. It's straight enough that some of the gore scenes still pack a bit of a gooey punch and it does conjure up some tension and some atmosphere throughout but the performances and the characters all take things very much over the top. At ninety-five minutes it doesn't overstay its welcome, it's nicely shot and features a pretty decent score (some Morbid Angel is used in a party scene!) and it has a few fun cast members who are all obviously having a good time with the material. It's all ultimately very ridiculous but also a whole lot of gory, trashy fun.
Night Of The Demons 2 arrives on Blu-ray framed at an aspect ratio of 1.78.1 in an AVC encoded 1080p high definition presentation. Olive Films obviously hasn't done a full blown restoration on the movie but evidently they were working with source elements that must have been in pretty decent shape. Colors are reproduced nicely, looking pretty accurate here and not boosted at all, which means all those gory scenes of green demon puke and of the demons melting after being barraged with holy water look nice and sickly here. We get some nice rich reds in the gore scenes that pop a bit but never bleed into the other colors. Detail isn't mind blowing, and some scenes do look softer than others, but again, it looks pretty good for a lower budget movie fast approaching its twentieth birthday. Fans of the film should be pretty satisfied here, even if they aren't completely blown away.
The only audio option on the disc is a DTS-HD 2.0 Stereo mix in English, there are no alternate language options, subtitles or closed captioning of any kind provided here. Overall the audio here is fine. Dialogue is easy enough to understand and there are no issues with any hiss or distortion. Though a 5.1 mix might have made the attack scenes and the big finish a bit more fun, what's here sounds just fine. The levels are well balanced, the score sounds good and the sound effects are nice and squishy, just as they should be. There is some good channel separation in a few scenes as well - pay attention to the scene where the kids are goofing around on the tennis court and you can hear a ball moving left to right and right to left. Little bits like that help to build some atmosphere nicely.
Aside from a static menu offering chapter selection, we also get a commentary track featuring the film's director, Brian Trenchard-Smith who is joined by David Lewis, the movie's cinematographer who makes it clear that he feels the transfer on the disc is too bright. The two have a good rapport here, joking about the quality of the picture, even quoting reviews of the film, but also managing to tell some interesting stories from the trenches. They discuss the effects, the cast and crew and shooting inside the Hull House location and they talk about some of the themes and ideas that are toyed around with in the movie, including the film's take on Catholicism. It would have been nice to see the trailer included here but Olive Films never seems to do that for whatever reason. It should also be noted that you can't get the commentary to play off of the menu, you need to switch audio tracks using your remote to get to it.
Night Of The Demons 2 isn't a masterpiece but it is a fun way to kill ninety-five minutes. It's gory, it's funny and it's plenty entertaining and it's got decent enough production values that it's generally pretty nice to look at too. Olive Films' Blu-ray debut looks pretty good and sounds decent too so that, combined with a genuinely good commentary, makes this one easy to recommended to horror fans.
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.