Immediately following the events of AT MIDNIGHT, Coffin Joe's second outing finds him recovering in a local hospital before being released to wreak his terrible vengeance against God once again. He enlists the help of the hunchbacked Bruno in kidnapping six young women, one of whom he intends to make his bride so that she can bear his child in order to continue his bloodline. The townspeople rally to save their wives and daughters, and to put an end to the fiend once and for all! THIS NIGHT's increased budget is evidenced in its elaborate sets, expanded scope, much larger cast, and vastly improved effects. The most accomplished shots belong to the nightmarish dream sequence where Joe is dragged into the depths of Hell (in lavish color!) to await his final punishment. Joe envisions Satan to be in his own image, drawing Christian parallels between Joe's thirst for knowledge and the fruit that was stolen from the Garden of Eden. Joe feels like a tamer and more written characterization of his earlier self, and while his morals and principles are still intact, the raw passion that Marins had brought to the original performance seems somewhat drained. Even the plot borders on a near-remake of the first film, but it isn't without its merits. Joe has devised all sorts of cruel new devices (and monologues) with which to torture his victims, with horribly bloody results. Though it still feels decades younger than it is, it THIS NIGHT is much more polished and professional than the original in almost every respect. The expansion of the character and his unique universe are both welcomed in this second entry, and it recaptures the same dark Gothic elements that made the first a success. Despite the advances in filmmaking, AT MIDNIGHT proves to be the more groundbreaking and engaging effort, but THIS NIGHT remains a worthy followup!
Number of views: 2.