What happens if whatever that was in there, that killed the guy – killed me, what happens if that fucking thing gets in here?
One of the key aspects to any debate about films is whether there are truly any good sequels. They often lose the magic of the original and more often than not, are just made as a cash-grab from studios that don’t know when to stop.
There are some very good sequels out there, if you can be bothered to look for them, but I’d say that they only account for roughly 5% of sequels, and the rest are just terrible.
Just for the record, here are SOME of my favourite sequels, all of which I think are either just as good, or are better than the original;
- Terminator 2
- The Dark Knight
- REC 2
- X Men : Days of Future Past (as a sequel to The Wolverine, which was terrible)
So what we’ve just established there is there there are good sequels, there are ok sequels, there are bad sequels, then there’s fifty layers of crap, and then there’s like “Cube 2 : Hypercube”.
Eight strangers awaken in a cube that is surrounded by an intense white light. On the each wall is a door that leads into another cube shaped room. As most of them try and figure out what is going on, they soon notice unusual behaviour from the rooms itself, such as the laws of physics seemingly not existing, such as climbing through a door on a side-wall, only to then fall into the next room as if gravity has shifted.
As they navigate through the rooms, they find that they are being pursued by a wall of energy that ages whatever it touches significantly, and that the laws of normal space time don’t seem to apply, with the characters regularly encountering future versions of themselves.
With options running out quickly, the characters are left to try and survive with a near literal race against time.
So what makes it a bad sequel?
Sequel to the amazing “Cube”, it abandons pretty much everything that made the first film so good, even down the absolute basics. You can’t have a sequel that other than the basic premise of being trapped in a cube, is absolutely nothing like the first one.
Let’s start with one of the basic plot points of the first one, the fact that rooms are trapped. In this they are not. The characters can move freely between the rooms and the only threat of death seems to come from the way of time that pops up every now and then. There is no sense of tension as the characters climb into rooms and not knowing if they’re trapped or not. Infact, other than the wave that ages everything significantly.
Now, I’m not saying that characters have to die in order for a horror film to be interesting (although they do start dying), but when one of the major plot points of the first film is that the characters could die at any second, you can’t just abandon that.
The characters are mindnumbingly terrible and stereotypical that it is unbelievable.
- Kate – The main character, a woman who wants everyone to get along
- Simon – A private detective with a short fuse and from the outset wants to make people afraid of him.
- Sasha – A blind teenager who cowers at every opportunity
- Jerry – A socially awkward engineer
- Max – A computer hacker who has a very bitter view of the world.
- Becky – A missing woman who Simon was sent to find
- Mrs Paley – An elderly woman with dementia
- Dr Rosenzweig – A scientist who used to work for the company that have put everyone in here but refuses to divulge any information. He willingly kills himself by not moving when the time wall is approaching him.
Unlike the first one, none of the characters develop at all. They tried to make Simon exactly like the way Quentin ended up in the first film, and by the end he also goes on a murderous rampage, but the difference is that you believe that Quentin is a good guy who loses his mind because of being trapped, but Simon is just a sociopath from the first second you meet him. It is just isn’t interesting.
It’s amazing that they have more characters than the first film but actually achieve significantly less, and one of the main points from the original was that none of the characters knew why they were in there, but in this one they throw that straight out of the water by letting you know in the first scene that he’s in that he knows what’s going on and why he’s there.
Not a single one of the characters is worth caring about and to be honest, neither is the story. It’s bland it really is. It classes itself as a psychological thriller but it really, really, really isn’t. There is nothing psychological about this. There is no tension, if anything, unlike Kazan from the first film, having someone around that has a mental condition, Mrs Paley in this film, isn’t actually a good thing and I wanted her to die so incredibly badly that every single time she was on the screen, it ruined the scene.
The character of Sasha is also bizarre. She is a blind woman who seems to require help with anything she does. It really makes you wonder how the character would cope in the real world and anywhere new that she goes. She can’t walk from one side of a 4 metre long room to the other without crying for help.
Sasha also ignores what Kate is telling her when she’s trying to escape from a sharp object that’s trying to kill them all, but then complains “well what do you want me to do?” Maybe if she listened then you wouldn’t be constantly putting yourself in danger.
She is a fine example of what a lot of film-makers do with blind characters in films like this, they try and make them far more interesting that would normally be the case. They are always able to sense something that’s going on that the other characters can’t see, are often horribly acted because the actor/ress obviously doesn’t know what it’s like to be blind and therefore can’t feel genuine, and they act like big know it-alls when they know nothing at all.
My biggest condemnation for the film though is that it’s boring. Nothing happens. At the time of writing I am actually watching the film to make notes on anything I miss whilst writing this and I’m 45 minutes into the film and other than one of the characters dying via his own choice, nothing has happened. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of films that are slow, not a lot really happens and they drag, but I can’t recall anything to this extent.
45 minutes is far, far, far too long for characters to just be talking and theorising about what’s happening without anything actually happening.
I’ve mentioned previously that it is extremely rare that I watch a film and turn it off before the end, regardless of how bad it is, but that’s what I would do now if I was watching this piece of trash for the first time. Even if this was a stand alone film and not a sequel to another film, I still wouldn’t find it interest. Yes, I’ve compared it a lot to the first film in this review, but even as a stand alone film it’s awful.
One of the worst sequels I have ever watched. Infact, I would go as far as saying that I hate this movie.
It’s boring, not very well made, is completely unrelated to the rest of the trilogy, asks questions that it never even attempts to answer and worst of all, just ignores what made the first, and to a lesser extent, the third film interesting.
If you’re going to watch the Cube franchise, avoid this entry because you won’t actually miss out on anything.