aka Henry II – Portrait Of A Serial Killer
84 min., 1996
Written by Chuck Parello
Directed by Chuck Parello
My rating: ★★
Introducing a kinder, cuddlier and more human Henry.
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Part two picks up a little bit after the original. We first see a bunch of victims of Henry, and then he wakes up a woman, takes her to an abandoned building and kills (off-screen) her. A little later we see that Henry (Neil Giuntoli) is now staying in a place for the homeless and the conditions are very terrible. He starts looking for a job and ends up at a Port-Able-John company and meets the boss Rooter (Daniel Allar), and a married couple that works there. Cricket (Kate Walsh) and Kai (Rich Komenich) who end up taking Henry in. While there he meets Cricket’s niece Louisa (Carri Levinson) who seems to have some mental problems, but is a really good artist. After Kai acts a bit weird and is continually going down into the basement, Henry decides to do a little exploring. In the basement Henry finds out that Kai has been doing arson work on the side for Rooter. Kai invites Henry to join him on his next job, and he agrees. At another arson job, they find two drug users and that’s when Henry shows Kai exactly what he does on the side. Can Kai handle the killing or are there going to be problems?
The acting in the movie is actually pretty decent. The best of the bunch would be Neil Giuntoli and Carri Levinson. Neil plays Henry differently than the original but still he’s really good. He’s got a pretty good cold stare and he is taking the material seriously which translates well to his delivery of dialogue. Now Carri Levinson is really good for the most part of the movie. In the beginning she plays the mousey type really well, but when the character starts to lose her shit she just goes way too over-the-top and it really doesn’t work.
Compared to the number of gory effects of the first movie, this one takes it a step further. There is a lot more onscreen violence, with heads being cut off and a screwdriver going up a nose, but overall the level of quality has gone down (and no I have not forgotten about the comb in the eye from the first movie). All of the effects just look really cheap this time around and with the screwdriver scene, it is painfully obvious how it was done. The first movie got it right with showing a lot less.
The biggest difference between this and the first movie is in the demeanor and emotions that they have given to Henry himself. In the first movie Henry was very emotionless. He killed just to kill. This time around Henry seems to kill for pleasure or if someone has wronged him. It works on a different level than the first, but as a movie called Henry it really fails. Another problem is with the fight/kill scenes. They look way too choreographed. At times it feels more like I’m watching West Side Story with killing then a serial killer. If it wasn’t called Henry it could have actually been a pretty good movie, but having it follow the first movie and still calling it Henry it actually hurts the movie more than anything. Another thing that bothered me was that they “revealed” the ending of the first movie which kind of destroys the end of the first movie.Have You Read...?