Here is an unnecessary sequel, but one that isn’t completely awful like you might expect. After the climax of Mirrors, where we learned that a demon was behind everything that happened and that was resolved, a twist ending allowed for a sequel. It’s unfortunate that the twist wasn’t used when crafting this sequel, or more correctly, the perspective the twist gave us isn’t used. This twist placed a character inside the mirror world, and ended up producing a potentially interesting idea.
The part of this idea that are used in Mirrors 2 is this: A soul (Stephanie Honoré Sanchez) is trapped inside the mirrors. We don’t view the film from her perspective, which is unfortunate, but also might be a good thing because once again, the laws of this universe have been altered. After getting inside, through means which I believe would count as a spoiler, she turns demonic, instead of keeping her sanity like the character did in Mirrors. I guess having a sane person terrorize others wouldn’t make much sense, although her reasoning behind it, once we learn what it is, does make sense.
Instead, our perspective is that of Max Matheson (Nick Stahl), who is still having nightmares and issues dealing with a car accident that claimed the life of his fiancée, Kayla (Jennifer Sipes). He takes pills and goes to counseling in order to try to deal with it, although he doesn’t have a job, and he spends most of his time sitting around his house. One day, his father (William Katt) calls, and offers him a job as a nighttime security guard at his new departments store, the Mayflower.
Yes, that Mayflower. They’ve even brought over a mirror and stand from the original, which apparently didn’t actually get destroyed after the ending of the first film. It adds something to the building, a character explains, although we’ve already see it force another security guard to eat a piece of glass. Or, his reflection ate a piece of glass, and he just felt the effects.
For those new to the series, that’s how the villains work. They hide in mirrors, and when you stand in front of them, they appear as your reflection, and whatever they do happens to you with no effects to them. The rules regarding what they’re allowed to do vary from scene to scene, but that’s the basic idea. The first victim was that security guard, although he doesn’t die from his wounds.
For the first half of Mirrors 2, it functions as a semi-descent slasher flick. Victims are killed in brutal ways, the killer can pop up whenever it wants to, and it’s actually quite atmospheric. Even the jump scares, which are frequent, work about as well as those things do. It combines incredibly loud sounds with frightening images, and I’ll admit that I jumped quite often.
But then the second half kicks in, and to keep the characters somewhat realistic, they need to find why these things are happening. Max enlists the help of Elizabeth Reigns (Emmanuelle Vaugiér), who is looking for her sister, Eleanor. You can be forgiven for thinking she doesn’t care all that much though, as Vaugiér seems unenthusiastic about everything that happens on-screen.
Sadly, once we start trying to solve what’s going on, Mirrors 2 becomes tedious and boring. Yes, there’s a reason that the mirrors are killing people, and yes, it kind of makes sense why the murders are going on, but we end up with an absolutely silly back story that has absolutely no relation to our main character, or any character we’ve spent significant time with. I watched without emotion because I didn’t have any connection to the character I was supposed to be caring about during these scenes.
I also made note that almost all of the kills disappear once Max and Elizabeth decide to play junior detective. The kills early on were actually quite inventive (with a highlight being a shower door guillotine) but after the characters decide to try to find out what’s behind the deaths, they stop anyway, right up until the end. The villain also changes, but with no clues earlier on giving the audience a reason to suspect this person, so it seems arbitrary and forced, even if it’s all explained in contrived flashbacks.
I’m not sure if you’re expecting good acting in a direct-to-DVD horror movie, but if you are, you had better look elsewhere, because you won’t get it here. Most of the characters simply don’t appear interested whenever they’re doing something in the film. Nobody shows emotion, even when a real person would, and that lead to more unintentional laughter from me than anything else. (For example, a character finds out that someone close to them has died. Not even a gasp is seen.)
Mirrors 2 is good during its first half, but once it becomes a mystery film, it fails. In a lot of ways, it’s like its predecessor, although I would argue that the first half of this film is better than that of the one before it. Regardless, it’s ultimately not worth a watch thanks to its contrived and arbitrary second half, although in terms of direct-to-DVD horror films, you could do worse. If you liked Mirrors, you’ll probably like this one too — it even continues the trend of not following its internal logic.