The 3rd Eye 2 (2019) – movie review

Originally titled Mata Batin 2, this Indonesian horror movie comes from writer and director Rocky Soraya, generally known as “the Indonesian James Wan”. He’s made a deal with Netflix, therefore all the horror movies directed by him are on the streaming service.

Rocky Soraya is responsible for a movie I talked about recently (Suzzanna: Buried Alive), for the Dolls trilogy (The Doll, The Doll 2 and Sabrina) and for the prequel to the The 3rd Eye 2, obviously titled The 3rd Eye, which came out in 2018.

I said before on this website that the only horror movie of his I liked was, in fact, The 3rd Eye, which is the reason why I was kind of curious to see the sequel. Sure, The 3rd Eye was very derivative, it copied the main storyline of Insidious and added a few elements ripped off The Sixth Sense, but it also was quite fun to watch and rather spooky.

In The 3rd Eye 2, we follow Alia, from the first movie, who decides to start a new life by living in an orphanage owned by Mrs Laksmi and Mr Fadli after her sister died. Together with Nadia, one of the orphans who apparently also has an inner eye like Alia, they hear mysterious voices asking for help from all over the walls of the house: when Alia and Nadia open a locked room, they release they freed Darmah, a vengeful spirit that was deliberately locked in the room. Together with Mrs Windu, an expert in “the power of the 3rd eye”, Alia must confront Darmah and save the orphanage.

Continue reading and check my final grade below…

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As you can tell from this brief synopsis, the plot of this movie isn’t exactly original. In fact, it basically tells the same story tons of other possession flicks have attempted, with generally poor results.

Here, however, there’s a much faster pace and much creepier atmosphere that help the viewer stay engaged. Out of the almost-two-hour-long runtime, there are only 10-15 minutes of dull moments. Other than that, there’s always something scary or exciting on screen.

It’s worth noting, though, that most of the scary bits in the film come from jump-scares, some of which are just extremely loud and quite annoying rather than effective.

The combination of jump-scares and trite storyline, together with the overreliance on every horror cliché imaginable, makes The 3rd Eye 2 a prime example of Jumptrope Movie (copyright J.R. Davis from WordMachinist, aka a film that borrows every single element from previously successful flicks.

Despite the lack of originality content wise and in terms of execution of the supposedly frightening moments, The 3rd Eye 2 improves upon the first movie in regards to production values and camera work. Most of the film takes place in a humongous mansion, which serves as an effective location to display some interesting camera angles, decent cinematography and great use of lighting and colours.

During certain sequences, this movie gets quite intense for the standards of the sub-genre, with gory bits that might add something to the experience. Depending on how much you like jumptrope movies, you might find The 3rd Eye 2 extremely annoying or rather scary.

However, the acting worsens a lot in comparison to the first movie: the characters aren’t very interesting to begin with (since we’ve seen copies of them in many similar flicks before), but the over-the-top, theatrical performances make certain scenes laughable rather than tense.

Overall, just like its predecessor, The 3rd Eye is a mixed-bag, and I personally experienced it as such: I was entertained for the most part, quite bored at points, rather annoyed during other sequences. If you’ve seen and liked some of the previous movies directed by Rocky Soraia, you’ll probably have a good time with this one as well. Otherwise, just avoid it, you won’t be missing out much.

The 3rd Eye 2                          5.5/10

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