Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies

Twice the Lame for Half the Budget

Main Cast: Holly Fields and Andrew Divoff

Director: Jack Sholder

You wanna talk about plot holes? 1999’s Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies should have been 7 minutes long. Having been returned to his original prison inside the fire opal, then secreted inside a statue at the end of the first movie, Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies opens in an art museum, presumably the one owned by Robert Englund’s Beaumont character from Wishmaster 1, where three art thieves are ransacking the place. One of the thieves, in an effort to be as quiet as possible, smashes a glass case, sets off an alarm, and guards rush in. One of the guards shoots the statue, tearing off a chunk of it and revealing the hidden jewel, which, of course, one of the thieves takes.

The djinn is once again released. The thief who set off the alarm is shot and killed while another thief is shot and wounded. He insists the third thief, his girlfriend Morgana, get out of Dodge while she still can. While Morgana’s boyfriend lays dying on the floor, the djinn appears and asks if there’s anything he can do to help. The boyfriend says, “I wish’d I’d never been born.”

Now, going by the rules of the first movie, this wish should have rewritten the history of everyone who had come into contact with this dude during the course of his entire life, which means, if he’d never been born, there’s a HIGH likelihood Morgana and the other dude wouldn’t have been in the museum that night, wouldn’t have set off the alarm, wouldn’t have alerted the guards who wouldn’t have shot the statue and released the jewel. Djinn is back in his prison and everyone can go home.

Unfortunately, that’s not how the rest of the movie went.

Instead, Morgana mourns the never-been-born boyfriend while the djinn, in his human guise, confesses to the robbery and is sent to prison.

Morgana wonders why this dude she’s never heard of is taking her rap until she discovers, through a series of nightmares coupled with some very conveniently detailed online research of her own, that he’s a djinn who needs to collect 1001 souls. And what better place to find a boatload of people who want something than prison?

In an interview for the 2012 documentary Behind the Curtain II, writer/director of Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies, Jack Sholder confesses the movie is dumb and not very good, but says he had some fun making it. Well, I guess that’s all that matters, then, isn’t it? Never mind the people who pay their money to be “entertained” by the fruits of your labor, the audience doesn’t matter, as long as HE had fun, I guess.

Hey, here’s a novel idea, try to make a good movie. Then again, considering Sholder’s other credits include A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge and The Hidden, I’m going out on a limb and saying “good movie” doesn’t mean the same to me as it means to Sholder.

The ex-almost-Mrs.-Corey Haim, Holly Fields (“Hull High”), stars as Morgana, bearing the weight of the movie as its hero. She does alright, I guess. I wasn’t convinced at all by her sudden change of heart midway through the movie, going from master thief to penitent in three easy steps (and what the hell was with her chopping off part of her pinky? That didn’t even make sense!), but I also felt she spent an awful lot of the movie like a kid whose been strapped into the roller coaster and only realizes as it’s going up that first hill that, “Holy crap, I’m actually ON this thing!”

Andrew Divoff (Wishmaster) returns as the evil djinn and all his evil sneers and overdone accent from the first movie are only more prevalent here. I wanted to make a joke here about Divoff hamming it up and being cheesy and turning that into a food reference, but I couldn’t quite find the best way to word it, so instead I’ll just say he was hamming it up and being cheesy. But not like regular ham and cheese, he was like a foot-long ham and cheese sub, and not even the good cheese like pepper jack, he was lame cheddar, and the ham had freezer burn. He was just bad. Yeah, he does a great villain, but this movie was not indicative of that particular talent.

“That Guy” actor Paul Johansson (“One Tree Hill”) stars as Gregory, Morgana’s ex boyfriend turned priest with whom she joins forces to fight the evil–offering the good father a little sexual temptation along the way and completely taking a big dump on the entire notion of faith and purity needed to battle the djinn during the climax. Then again, apparently Morgana has an entirely different kind of climax planned, you dig?

For what it’s worth, I’d have to say Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies is as decent a follow-up to the first movie as there is ever likely to be, but honestly, that’s not saying much. This is still a bad movie and the only reason to bother with it is if you’re intent on watching the entire series, which itself probably isn’t a great idea. Casual viewing or morbid curiosity are not reason enough to lose 96 minutes of your life to something this blah.

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