By Maddie Knight
The new horror movie “Brahms: The Boy II” is a disappointing sequel that is more bland than frightening.
“Brahms: The Boy II” is a 2020 American horror movie and a standalone sequel to the popular 2016 film “The Boy.” However, this movie has little relation to the first film, even ignoring a major plot point from the first installment.
The first film focuses on Brahms the doll and his reluctant babysitter Greta, who was no doubt expecting to babysit an actual child and was very surprised to come face-to-face with a realistic porcelain doll instead. This doll belongs to the Heelshires, who made it after the death of their son.
For the whole movie, we are led to believe the doll is haunted, due to the scary supernatural incidents that seem to follow it (including Greta’s brutal death towards the end of the film). But it turns out, the real culprit of all this is an actual person; the previously mentioned dead son Brahms, who is now an adult and grew up living in the walls after his parents faked his death (which they claimed was to protect him after his best friend was murdered and he was the main suspect).
It is a good and fairly unexpected twist, which is why it is disappointing that the second movie completely ignores it, instead pretending it never happened and taking a completely different, more stereotypical approach.
The new movie abandons that twist in favor of a different story in which the doll is actually haunted and has gone through multiple families that have lived in the Heelshires manor, slaughtering people and causing strange incidents over several decades.
“Brahms: The Boy II” starts following an intentionally ambiguous incident that leaves the character Liza with a head injury and her young son Jude silent and traumatized for months. Then their family moves across the country to the Heelshires mansion. When exploring the woods outside their new home, Jude finds an old porcelain doll buried. He dusts it off and takes it home with him. Jude becomes very attached to the doll, Brahms, but it gets darker when Liza and her husband Sean discover the history behind the doll and Brahms gains authority by “speaking” to Jude and manipulating the already unstable child into going along with his plans.
The plot, besides its noncompliance with the previous film, still sounds reasonably interesting but is poorly executed. Most of the scenes are either too fast-paced or too slow-paced. The viewer is either confused or bored, with not much in between.
Additionally, the movie is generally underwhelming. The acting is subpar, the family fails to react realistically to events that have transpired. The film had the potential to be really interesting but was mainly just used to create extra jumpscares.
Jumpscares were the only real horror aspect of this movie. There are several jumpscares, but most of them are very predictable. Also, in slower parts of the movie, it feels like you are just waiting for a jumpscare as not much else is happening.
The movie is very slow until the last 15 minutes, where the ending is extremely rushed. They attempt to tie up every loose end and manage to do so in ways that don’t make much sense. For example, the family dog dies towards the end of the movie (after the conflict is resolved) for no reason but to raise the death count and tie up the loose end that the family hasn’t suffered any real losses throughout the ordeal.
“Brahms: The Boy II” is a disappointing sequel, a bland movie, and a film that’s not worth your time to watch.