Two years ago we were given the film Mirrors, it was a stylish horror film from French director Alexandre Aja (High Tension, Piranha 3D) and starring Kiefer Sutherland (24), based on the Korean film Into the Mirror. It was an interesting mix of Asian horror remake through a French filter in the American system. The movie had great style, a creepy atmosphere, and a neat ending but was not a terribly good movie as it made little sense and did not really hold together. We now have a sequel that in a way is a better movie than its predecessor but is not executed nearly as well, and that’s saying something.
Mirrors 2, a direct to video release, sees the Mayflower department store opening up a new branch in New Orleans. The centerpiece of the new store is a big mirror, I am assuming it is from the burned-out store of the first film. Of course, we also know what the presence of the big mirror means, right? My assumption was that the evil from the first movie was transported here. Unfortunately, and I hate to break it to you, it is just a big mirror with no real significance other than it being a mirror in a movie called Mirrors 2.
The story centers on Max (Nich Stahl). He is a guy going through a rough patch. He was involved in a car accident that killed his girlfriend and now he is constantly in therapy for his misplaced guilt, and has fallen so low as to take a night watchman job offered to him by his father who, you guessed it, owns the Mayflower store.
Our hapless hero walks around the building, gets scared by a girl in the mirror, which sends him back to therapy. Then people around him begin dying. So, what does he do? He begins talking to the mirror. Since he is seeing a zombified girl, who actually is a missing person, and the big wigs in gruesome situations it seems only natural that he feels the need to uncover the mystery. It’s too bad he doesn’t display a little more intensity.
There is not a lot to the movie. It is a straight forward narrative that sets our hero along on his quest, offers up side characters as kill fodder, and has a few police detectives poking around on occasion. Oh yes, there is also the love interest who really isn’t a love interest in Emmanuelle Vaugier (whom you may recognize from Saw II).
It doesn’t take long for everything to come together or to understand what is going on. This is what makes it better than the first one. The story is actually understandable, even if one of the mirror’s intended victims doesn’t make a lot of sense. However, where it make up for its understandable story is in its overall blandness. I will take the convoluted, atmospheric goofiness of the first one.
None of the actors seem all that interested in being there, much of the dialogue is laughably bad, and it is not creepy or scary in the least. They took the first film, simplified it down to its bare minimum and just let it play out in the simplest way possible.
Mirrors 2 is not so much a bad movie as it is a boring one. There is little chemistry, no development, and when it is over I felt nothing.
Audio/Video. The 1.85:1 widescreen video is decent at best. I mean, it is definitely better than what you get on DVD, but it lacks any sort of pop. The overall image is soft and the color palette is drab. It has decent detail, mostly in faces during close ups. Like the movie, it is just dull to look at. The audio track is much the same, save for a few musical stings to wake you up. I wish there was more to say, but this is what it is and doesn’t do any more than that. I suspect it has a lot to do with the drab source.
- Watch the Movie in the Mirror. This is kind of neat, during key moments throughout the film you will get a window pop up showing the scene from the perspective of the girl in the mirror and seeing what she does.
- The Other Side: Making Mirrors 2. Warning, the intro to this gives away the end of the movie. This runs nearly 10 minutes and features interviews with director Victor Garcia, the producers, and Nick Stahl. It gives a brief overview of the development and production.
- Keeping it Real: The Visual and Special Effects. I love how it opens with an actress likening her death to the one in Psycho. Yeah right. Still, this interesting in how they did some of this stuff. I particularly like the practical effects.
- Deleted Scenes. A couple of clips are included. Nothing particularly special.
- Into the Mirror. Possibly the best extra is the one I haven’t watched. There is a DVD of the film included and that disk also contains the original Korean film Into the Mirror.