Don’t Breathe 2 is a confusing direction to take the two part horror franchise. Since it took 5 years to make a sequel, Fede Álvarez gave his co-writer Rodo Sayagues the director’s chair. Don’t Breathe made effective use of its concept in a way that was tricky to replicate. The original home invaders weren’t exactly saints, but at least they felt like victims. Don’t Breathe 2 basically turns the evil “Blind Man” into the protagonist by making the new home invaders more evil than he is.
Stephen Lang is as ruthless as he was before, but this time he’s too sympathetic. The first movie has twists that I won’t give away. So I’ll at least say that Norman Nordstrom survived and finally has the daughter he wanted. Despite their misguided attempts to redeem a murderer, the only character who comes close to being good is Nordstrom’s replacement daughter Phoenix played by capable newcomer Madelyn Grace.
Nordstrom and his Rottweiler protect her in his newly fortified Detroit home where Phoenix longs for freedom. The sequel at least replicates the tense atmosphere when the house is broken into. Even though the home invaders are mostly disposable criminals who are only around to increase the body count. The lead criminal played by Brendan Sexton III has a personal connection to Phoenix that make his true intentions more messed up. When she’s kidnapped, the once subtle film turns into a needlessly gory killing spree with a few clever tricks from “The Blind Man.” Don’t Breathe 2 is a rare horror movie with nobody to root for.
Preceded by: Don’t Breathe