The Djinn is back, and this time he’s meaner, leaner, and funnier — which, incidentally, also describes the film’s budget. Since “Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies” is a direct-to-video/cable production, the franchise has now officially begun its B-Movie Horror run.
The sequel picks up where the original left off, with the defeated Djinn imprisoned in his red ruby. He isn’t imprisoned for long, when a pair of thieves breaks into the museum and steals the ruby, and during a gunbattle the Djinn’s ruby is broken in half. Unleashed back into the world, the Djinn continues on his quest to make enough wishes (and kill enough people) in order to reach his goal. (See the above review for the original for reference regarding said “goal.”)
When you need a lot of condemned souls fast, where do you go? Why, to Las Vegas, of course! But first, the Djinn gets himself arrested (yes, that’s right, arrested) and is sentenced to a maximum-security prison where he gets his pick of the prisoners. Of course, this also gives the Djinn more opportunity to kill people and make bad one-liners, which he does plenty of both.
On the Djinn’s track this time is one half of the thieves that set the Djinn loose and a priest. The duo talks, investigates (re: bores us), before finally chasing the Djinn to Vegas where the final battle begins. Well, actually, this isn’t the final battle, because parts 3 and 4 are already out on video store shelves everywhere.
The budget for “Wishmaster 2” is smaller, but the kills are still quite clever. It’s always fun to try to guess ahead of time how the Djinn will twist a person’s wish around. There isn’t nearly as much gore as the first, and the lead character’s investigation and nightmares about the Djinn are all essentially remakes from the original. Still, despite the Djinn’s power seeming less grand, star Andrew Divoff seems to have a much better handle on his character, and he’s fabulous as the Djinn, who doesn’t seem as much “evil” as he is just wicked.
And if you’re like me, you always wanted to see what it would look like if a man could, ahem, make love to himself. Writer/director Jack Sholder has apparently always wondered the same thing…
Jack Sholder (director) / Jack Sholder (screenplay)
CAST: Tammy Lauren …. Alexandra
Andrew Divoff …. The Djinn
Robert Englund …. Raymond
Chris Lemmon …. Nick