“Can we not watch this, I don’t think I want to see something so intense,” I said out loud, 20 minutes into ‘Don’t Breathe 2’, after suggesting we watch it on Netflix in the first place. But we did finish it in one go. Directed by Rodo Sayagues, it has Stephen Lang reprising his role as the killer blind man we all saw in the 2016 thriller ‘Don’t Breathe’. The movie was scarier than most horror films that came out that year, and the sequel is just as good. Almost.
Plot overview – A navy veteran trains his adopted daughter in survival skills and keeps the family isolated by home-schooling the girl. Things get out of hand when a band of men intrude into their house and attempt to kidnap the girl.
Let’s quickly recap ‘Don’t Breathe’ to get a better grip on the sequel – Three friends break into the house of a blind old man to steal money, expecting it to be an easy heist. But they find themselves trapped in the house with a dangerous owner who gives them hell. To make things worse, they further incur his wrath by causing the death of a pregnant woman who was being held captive in the house. The blind man claims the woman had caused his daughter’s death, so he impregnated her through artificial insemination, to make her bear him another child. A twisted revenge and a heist gone horribly wrong. That’s what the story is about. It ends with a cliffhanger – only one thief survives, after managing to fatally injure the old man, but she discovers on the news that he is alive and has been taken to the hospital.
Let’s get back to ‘Don’t Breathe 2’ now. Did we really need another movie with the old man going through a similar ordeal? Intruders breaking into his house, not for his money, but for the girl he is raising. How terrible can one’s fortune be? To experience home intrusion not once but twice! Writers Fede Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues create a character that’s a strong anti-hero, a protagonist you cannot decide how to feel for. You are torn between thinking ‘this dude deserves all the shit that happens to him, karma bitch’ and ‘c’mon give the old man a break!’.
The pace is pitch-perfect, keeping you on the edge of your seat once the intrusion begins. You never know who is going to hit/kill who. There’s a lot of violence, gore and jump scares better than most horror movies. The only thing unrealistic about the film is just how hardy Stephen Lang’s blind old man is. He is like a human terminator on steroids. No matter how much you injure him, he stands back up, like a super-human. Some of the action sequences are great.
There is a pretty good twist towards the climax, and just like the 2016 flick, there are no good guys in this one either. For a few minutes the pace slackens at the end, to give way for some emotional moments that doesn’t fit well with the rest of the plot, yet gives the movie a much needed human touch that some viewers would seek.
‘Don’t Breathe 2’ is a morally grey film that keeps you entertained, even though some parts are way too exaggerated. There’s lots of blood and gore, not the ‘Saw’ movies kind, but enough to make those with low tolerance for violence hit the pause button plenty. So be warned.
It’s a 7/10 from me.
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