I’m trying to think of how to write anything about The Grudge 2 other what “What a dumb effin’ movie.” There are some ideas floating around in my head, but it all keeps coming back to that central idea. So, here are my supporting arguments.
1) The acting is just damned awful. Particularly in the narrative stream involving the teenage girls, you feel like you’re watching a parody of a porn movie. People speak in little else than clichés, oblivious to the fact that they’re supposed to seem like they’re acting naturally, and not performing an ironic skit. Once you throw in Japanese teen girl Miyuki’s attempts to keep up with American slang, about a third of the movie becomes damned near unwatchable.
2) It’s quite stupid. There are three stories going on simultaneously, all eventually sort of connected at the end. Really, it’s three vaguely related narratives, where in the last four minutes of the movie, characters start to intersect, making you go “…and?”.
Then there’s “the curse” itself. According to the mythology of the film, when someone is killed in a violent act, it creates a violent, malicious spirit that eventually kills you dead. Okay, so, fine, I buy it. And maybe I can understand the whole part where the spirit stalks you in particularly scary ways first, so that you can be as messed up and terrified as possible when it finally kills you. It’s not pretty, but I understand it. But, beyond that, the whole thing is a mess of illogic. If, according to this mythology, this is what happens when a super-violent act is perpetrated, then why are there not thousands, if not millions of evil ghosts going around killing people with their hair, like Kayako does.
For about 10 minutes, the movie offers a possible explanation for this in Kayako’s past, involving her mother’s career as a “the closest word for it in English is ‘exorcist.'” But, when we finally meet the mum, she tells us that that isn’t the case, and that this is an entirely separate matter and, oh, by the way, when this kind of curse happens, it can’t be stopped, it will just continue to grow.
Which brings us to this other enormous problem. If, as we’ve already established, this is just what happens when people die violently, there should be thousands of evil ghosts. Adding to this, the fact that the curse spreads, and can never be stopped, then really, the apocalypse should have happened a long time ago, since people have been doing really awful things to each other for a really friggin’ long time. Which leads me to believe that Kayako’s curse is a special one. However, the mother claims that it can’t be stopped, and speaks with authority on the subject. But, in order for the mother to have developed this authority, there must be some kind of precedent for it happening, but if it truly is unstoppable and as pervasive as Kayako is, then there should be a worldwide epidemic of murder ghosts. But, as far as I can tell, there aren’t. Which leads us to the last possibility, which is that the mother is full of shit. If that’s the case, then her whole scene is useless, which it was anyway, as was this movie.