Stars: Hunter Johnson, David Coupe, Lara Jean Mummert, James Cullen Bressack, Jody Barton | Written and Directed by Hunter Johnson
Unless you’re new to Nerdly, or just haven’t being paying attention, we’re (well when I say we I mean I am) a big fan of the films of James Cullen Bressack. So much so that I’ve tried my damndest to get his films released here in the UK – we had Hate Crime banned by the BBFC but we did have success in releasing To Jennifer, Bressack’s found-footage, shot on the iPhone shocker earlier this year on UK-based VOD site TheHorrorShow.TV
But it seems I’m not the only fan of Bressack’s work… Hunter Johnson, the man behind LAHorror.com, is apparently so much of a fan of Bressack’s film, To Jennifer in particular, that he set out to make – with permission of course – a sequel to that nasty little fear flick. And so we have 2Jennifer (see what they did there?) Written by Johnson and Bressack and directed by Johnson, the film is a meta-horror that puports that the original film is just that, a film; and this sequel follows filmmaker Spencer (played by director Hunter Johnson), as he goes about making the sequel – and it stars James Cullen Bressack and Jody Barton, both of whom appear in the original film, as themselves. Confused yet?
For those unfamiliar with the original film, it told the story of Joey – who suspected his girlfriend of two years, Jennifer, is cheating on him. He is so convinced that he enlists the help of his cousin Steven to create a video diary of his attempt to catch her in the act. 2 Jennifer jettisons that plot to tell an all-new tale of one horror fans obsession with the original movie and his quest to find his own Jennifer. Think of this as To Jennifer’s own Scream 2.
Whilst Bressack’s film played things very straight, letting the situation reach peaks over very dark humour, for his outing Hunter Johnson throws some black comedy into the horror mix from the get-go. And nowhere is that more evident than in star/director Johnson’s character of Spencer: an annoying, horror-obsessed, jackass. The type of character who gives horror fans a bad name; oddly reminiscent of the type of so-called “hardcore” horror fan you tend to see floating around horror forums and Facebook groups across the net… Sadly Spencer is not the only annoying character in this movies cast. Whether intentional or not, Johnson has populated his male cast with characters you’d gladly see eviscerated 5 minutes aftet they open their mouths! Thank god then for the female member of the cast – this film titular Jennifer – aka actress Lara Jean Mummert.
That’s not to say 2 Jennifer is all about the black comedy. This is still a horror movie and there’s no way you can say this movie doesn’t reach the same sleazy climates as its predecessor, because it does. And it does so in the best Peeping Tom fashion, revealing the twisted, narcissistic tendencies of its cast under the watchful eye of the found-footage gaze; and when it eventually reaches its killer-crescendo? Well all hell breaks loose, even moreso than in To Jennifer.
Successfully recapturing the homemade, down and dirty look and feel of Bressack’s original film, 2 Jennifer is a worthy successor to the iPhone murder crown.