One of the most controversial films of the 70s I Spit on Your Grave has remained one of the biggest cult horror films of all time. When filmmaker Steve R. Monroe stepped up to take on the job to direct the 2010 remake he filled the shoes perfectly creating not only a great homage to the original but also the stepped things up to a memorable gore fest like no other. Now Monroe is back and bringing another new entry with I Spit on Your Grave 2, but does it still pack the same punch or will it be a forced attempt at creating a franchise?
I Spit On Your Grave 2 follows a young struggling model who accepts an offer to get new photos taken for her portfolio but turns into a nightmare of rape, torture, and kidnapping, but when a twist of fate sets her free she taps into the darkest reaches of her soul to survive and exact brutal revenge on her attackers. Once again director Monroe has created another great addition to this controversial series but manages to give it a different feel as opposed to just rehashing the same stuff. This film is only connected in name and idea beyond that this is a stand-alone film and has nothing to do with the previous entry. This time around they step out of the woods and into the big city and even go international to tell this latest tale of horror and vengeance. Despite being a straight to video release this film sports the look and feel of a bigger budget. The story felt bigger and takes it’s sometimes uncomfortable time to tell this story helping it to feel more fleshed out. The acting is decent for the most part, but there are a few moments that come off unintentionally funny at times. Major props go to lead actress Jemma Dallender as this has to be an emotionally draining role as well as the physical abuse she has to endure to make it work. She clearly was all in and it shows taking the disturbing nature of the film to a level beyond what most films try to be. There are some disturbing moments here to be expected but some will literally make you cringe in pain if you are a guy.
While this film series is often classified as a horror and there are some truly horrific moments here these films play more as revenge, women empowerment film cranked up to an insane level. The gore isn’t near as a high as the last film, but the choice of death and torture made it just as effective and succeeds to live up to the franchise name. While this sequel wasn’t really needed it works great and opens up a direction that they could continue to produce them and if that happens, let’s hope it maintains this direction and quality.