Don’t Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel

by | Aug 22, 2023 | Film Reviews | 0 comments

Don’t Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel

Release date: 13 August 2021 (USA)
Director: Rodo Sayagues
Budget: 15 million USD
Box office: 53,8 million USD

The anticipation surrounding “Don’t Breathe 2” (2021) was palpable, given the chilling success of its predecessor. As a film and movie blogger, I eagerly ventured into this sequel, hoping to experience the same nail-biting tension that made the first film a hit. However, what I found was a film struggling to find its identity and failing to live up to the high expectations set by its forerunner. With a rating of 4 out of 10, “Don’t Breathe 2” falls short of capturing the gripping essence that made the original so memorable.


Don't Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel | Movie Review


Storyline: A Misstep into the Dark

The film picks up years after the events of the first instalment, reintroducing us to Norman Nordstrom (Stephen Lang), the enigmatic and menacing blind man. This time around, Norman is tasked with protecting a young girl named Phoenix (Madelyn Grace) from a group of ruthless criminals. The narrative aims to add depth to Norman’s character, revealing his tragic past and the reasons behind his vigilantism. While this approach offers potential for an engaging character study, the execution falls flat, struggling to balance its sympathetic portrayal of Norman with the disturbing actions he takes.

One of the primary issues lies in the film’s moral ambiguity. The line between protagonist and antagonist blurs to a point where it becomes challenging to root for any character. The attempt to humanize Norman feels disjointed, making it difficult for audiences to empathize with his actions. This narrative inconsistency undermines the film’s impact, leaving us detached from the characters’ fates.


Don't Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel | Movie Review


Filming and Cast: Strong Performances Amidst Shaky Ground

Stephen Lang reprises his role as Norman, and his dedication to the character shines through. Lang’s portrayal exudes a haunting intensity, capturing the complexities of a character trapped in a morally grey world. Madelyn Grace’s performance as Phoenix is commendable, showcasing her range as an actress. The chemistry between Lang and Grace adds an emotional layer to the film, though their efforts are often overshadowed by the film’s shortcomings.

From a technical standpoint, the use of sound and camera work attempts to replicate the tension of the original. The tight spaces and unsettling silence contribute to the eerie atmosphere, but the film relies heavily on jump scares to evoke fear. This reliance diminishes the suspense that made the first film stand out and feels like a missed opportunity to craft a more nuanced sense of dread.


Don't Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel | Movie Review


Reception at the Box Office: A Lukewarm Response

“Don’t Breathe 2” faced an uphill battle in meeting the expectations set by its predecessor. The film received a lukewarm response at the box office, falling short of replicating the success of the original. This tepid reception highlights the challenges of creating a sequel that lives up to the reputation of a beloved film. While it managed to attract audiences seeking thrills, the mixed reviews from both critics and viewers indicate that “Don’t Breathe 2” failed to capture the same magic.


Don't Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel | Movie Review


Online Reviews: A Consensus of Missed Potential

A glance at online reviews reveals a consensus among critics and audiences that “Don’t Breathe 2” missed the mark. Many reviews echo the sentiment that while the film had potential, it squandered it with a convoluted narrative and murky character motivations. The attempt to delve into Norman’s backstory and explore his psyche is appreciated, but the execution left much to be desired. The moral greyness that pervades the film ends up being more frustrating than thought-provoking, leaving viewers unsatisfied.


Don't Breathe 2 (2021) Gasping for Breath in a Muddled Sequel | Movie Review



As a film and movie blogger, my assessment of “Don’t Breathe 2” lands at a rating of 4 out of 10. While the film showcases strong performances from Stephen Lang and Madelyn Grace, it ultimately fails to deliver on the promise of its predecessor. The muddled storyline, coupled with its struggle to find a clear moral compass, results in a film that lacks the cohesive tension that made the original so captivating. “Don’t Breathe 2” had the potential to expand on its intriguing premise, but it falters in its attempts to craft a satisfying and engaging sequel.


My Rating: 4/10
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