Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer: Part II (1996) Review


AKA. Henry Portrait of a Serial Killer 2: The Mask of Sanity.

Picking up a short time after the original Henry, now played by Neil Giuntoli with none of Michael Rooker’s menace, is now homeless; spending his nights in hostels and shelters.

To dig himself out of his situation he takes a job at a port-o-loo company where he quickly befriends coworker Kia who offers him a room.

Living with Kia, Kia’s wife Cricket, and their disturbed orphaned niece Louisa, things are going well for Henry; although he soon discovers that Kia has a secrete life as a professional arsonist.

Up until this point, and even as Henry starts to join Kia in his enterprise, things are going well for Henry, and that’s the film’s biggest problem; for much of its run-time it comes across as an only very slightly gritty daytime soap. Henry’s problems have less to do with risking lethal injection for his crimes and more to do with dealing with Louisa’s romantic advances.

When Henry does finally start to introduce Kia to his world, the murders are still too few and far between and not nearly grim enough; nothing here competes with even the tamer murders in the first movie, and certainly the movie has nothing to rival the original’s disturbing home-invasion sequence.

With an inferior cast, story, script, direction, cinematography, and even effects, the whole thing comes across as a made-for-TV cash-in; the fact that it was made a decade too late is mystifying.

Sadly, and predictably, the sequel nobody asked for turned out to be the movie nobody wanted.

I could start a fire in space if I wanted to.


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