(director/writer: Damien Leone; cinematographer: George Steuber; editor: Damien Leone; music: Paul Wiley; cast: David Howard Thornton (Art), Lauren LaVera (Sienna), Jenna Kanel (Tara Heyes), Felissa Rose (Ms. Principe), Chris Jericho (Burke), Griffin Santopietro (Eric), Kailey Hyman (Brooke), Elliott Fullham (Jonathan), Samantha Scaffidi (Victoria Heyes), Casey Hartnett (Allie), Sarah Voight (Barbara), Georgia MacPhail (double for the little pale girl), Amelie McLain (The Little Pale Girl), Sarah Grace Sanders (mom of trick or treat daughter), Tamara Glynn (Shopping Mother), Devon Roth (Stephanie), Catherine Corcoran (Dawn); Runtime: 138; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Steven Della Salla/Phil Falcone/Jason Leavy/Michael Leavy: Cinedigm; 2022)

“Has a macabre sense of humor about its over-the-top violence (which might be its only saving grace).”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

The popular for the masses low-budget (made for $259, 000) and high grossing sadist sequel horror pic (a likely future ‘midnight’ cult film) by writer-director Damien Leone (“All Hallow’s Eve”/”Frankenstein vs. the Mummy”), who also designed the special make-up effects, is cruel, absurd and vomit-inducing.

It’s about the bloody return through a sinister entity of ‘Art the Clown’ (David Howard Thornton, in a good physical performance) to Miles County. In 2016, in Leone’s Terrifier, the clown first appeared as a twisted serial killer and supposedly died but didn’t. He returns on Halloween night a year later with a little girl clown companion (Amelie McLain), probably a manifestation of his dark side who is based on a 10-year former vic of his, and targets the children of grieving mom Barbara (Sarah Voight). She’s a single parent raising her still mournful daughter, over her dad’s recent death, the teenager Sienna (Lauren LaVera, perfect for the role), still working on her warrior costume that was designed by dad from a comic book, and her younger brother Jonathan (Elliott Fullam).

Sienna dreams she fended off an attacking Art with fire, and inexplicably had to put out a fire in her bedroom. On the following day Sienna and her friends encounter the menacing clown, and in inventive ways Art hacks them into little pieces, throws acid in their faces and has good laugh over his foul deeds as his companion taunts them. It leads to a showdown at the climax between the Clown and Sienna.

It’s not my way of being entertained, but it might suit others who have a taste for tasteless gory films if they’re well-made and it gives them the rough stuff promised, and also has a macabre sense of humor about its over-the-top violence (which might be its only saving grace).

But the overlong fascist-like film is merely a B-slasher film with not much of a sensible story to justify all the gratuitous violence, pain, its unpleasant ghoulish menacing mute smirk-like grin throughout from the depraved Clown and its lack of intrigue.

REVIEWED ON 11/20/2022  GRADE: C+