I quite enjoyed the first All Hallows’ Eve, if only because it brought the world Terrifier. As a standalone anthology, it held its own pretty well, too. The wraparound halloween story of a couple of kids finding an old V.H.S. tape consisting of three short films was appropriately creepy, and it also gave us Art the Clown…
Conceptually, All Hallows’ Eve 2 follows its predecessor closely, just not particularly well. This time, a pumpkin masked killer leaves a single lady a tape with more than half a dozen short films. Unlike the first movie, Art’s replacement is not featured in these segments. In other words, one of the main conceits of the predecessor is nowhere to be seen. Each segment has different writers/directors, and all in all, All Hallows’ Eve 2 is not a cohesive anthology collection.
That’s not to say that some of the individual films don’t hold up in their own right.
The Last Halloween works as a post-apocalyptic horror, and
The Offering has a decent Tales from the Crypt vibe. In general, this anthology is more Creepshow-y than the current run of Creepshow, so it has that going for it.
That aside, a handful of middling shorts don’t do anything to save a disconnected wraparound story. With the original All Hallows’ Eve, Damien Leone wrote and directed the entire package, giving it a full-fledged continuity. I doubt the segment teams from the sequel ever talked.
Trickster, as Art’s nemesis-substitute is called, is little more than a set dressing.
Fair is fair, though. The reason the wraparound’s protagonist owns a V.H.S. player is delivered with a great line, and it makes the first five minutes of the movie worth watching. After that, you’re on your own.