The Woman in Black: Angel of Death has all the horror elements that you’d expect from a Hammer film. Yet, unfortunately for me, most the thrills came from its jump scares and not the story itself. This sequel to 2012’s The Woman in Black is set 40 years after the events of the first film, and continues to explore the effects that losing a child has on people. Only this time around, we find a headmistress and her assistant with a group of children (escaping the city bombings of WWII) as they run into the mysterious Woman in Black.
Some interesting things to note is that the first film starred Daniel Radcliffe who most people will know is Harry Potter in the movie adaptations of the books. In this sequel, we find two more alums from those movies: Helen McCrory (Narcissa Malfoy) and Adrian Rawlins (James Potter). Adrian Rawlins also happened to play the Arthur Kidd character from the 1989 version of The Woman in Black, the role that Radcliffe played in the 2012 version.
Rawlins puts in another good performance (this time as Dr. Rhodes). McCrory as the headmistress Jean Hogg was outstanding. Her assistant Eve (played wonderfully by Phoebe Fox) wasn’t as multidimensional as Ms. Hogg, but was still intriguing to follow, as we learn what links her to the Woman in Black (played by Leanne Best). Ultimately this film centers around the children though, and the young actors in this film put in decent performances.
Though I like the new WWII setting and the cast, I question the need for this sequel. The story probably could have been handled with a different angry spirit and been just as effective. As such, this film was hurt by predictable outcomes and recycled material. Though this film succeeds at capturing the tone of the first movie, it’s fails to expand on that feel through its imagery, music, and pacing. I’m sure there will be another sequel though. Do you suppose they will have three actors from the Harry Potter movies then?
I give this movie a 2.25 out of 5.