Part 2 of my series on the IKWYDLS Trilogy
Banking on the success of both the first installment of this trilogy as well as that of Scream, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (ISKWYDLS) is a rare example of a sequel being better than the pilot.
You see, a big reason why sequels flop or pale in comparison to its predecessor is because of the director’s egotistic mentality of starting from scratch, trying something completely new to demonstrate versatility. This sequel however, is different since not only did it keep its strengths but polished those even better. The movie continued with its slasher theme albeit in a much more improved manner where there was actually more than one memorably gory scene.
It also developed an element that worked well with the Scream franchise which is having a comedic side to it. This latter aspect was helped by the addition of two novelty characters in the film, a stoner named Titus (portrayed by Jack Black) and one of the supporting characters, Tyrell (Mekhi Phifer).
Yet perhaps the best improvement of all was the emphasis on Jennifer Love Hewitt’s – umm – assets. It is worth a guess that the producers realized that the success of the prequel was in part driven by nerdy, horny, virgins drooling over close-up shots of Julie James. Have a look for yourself:
If the prequel was prude and only had sporadic, split-second close-ups of Julie, this ISKWYDLS goes ape-shit with it. Showing her in skimpy sleep-wear, a tiny bikini and even a close-up shot of her in a two-piece lying in a tanning bed.
But enough of the objectification. This sequel has more merits outside of its characters’ aesthetics.
As mentioned previously, the trilogy embraced its place as a full-blown slasher film in this installment by introducing more gory episodes. The first installment only had one or two memorably nasty scenes in it, which drew criticisms for being too mild and resembling more of a PG-13 thriller.
This sequel had numerous death scenes; and it wasn’t even just going overboard with the gore that made it so entertaining, it was also about how grisly these scenes were:
Those screengrabs could easily be mistaken for one of those underground, indie horror-slasher films that bank on gore.
The sequel still had Hewitt’s character as the lead protagonist, but now she has a new best friend in Karla (Brandy Norwood) – who, like Sarah Michelle Gellar’s Helen from the prequel is also of the hot, bimbo-ish, party-girl archetype.
The prequel ended with Julie being attacked by The Hook (aka Ben Willis) in her college shower, but in the beginning of this movie that was revealed to only be a nightmare. Apparently, our sexy heroine has been having nightmares and is in an erratic mood ever since that incident last summer.
So when her friend Karla wins an all-expense paid trip to the Bahamas for “correctly” answering a radio contest question in which she was asked for the capital of Brazil, Julie found it to be the perfect chance to get away from it all.
Trouble brews in paradise – and it is probably at this point I stop narrating the events in this movie or else I’d be giving out spoilers.
What I will give out is that this film is definitely worth your time, most especially if you enjoyed the first installment.
I STILL Know What You Did Last Summer adds something that was not present from the first movie and is more reminiscent of the Scream series — comedy. This was done by the addition of Titus and Tyrrell, though the former was more cringe than funny.
It also improves on its gore, which was noticeably lacking from the first movie and was a target of criticism for many. The reveal of the killer was also an improvement from the prequel, as audience would be left guessing down to the final 15 minutes as to who the killer is.
I bestow this movie with a solid: B.