WISHMASTER 2: EVIL NEVER DIES
The good news is that Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies is a better sequel than Freddys Revenge was. It explores themes from the original more than might be expected of a formulaic run through at one point, someone has the ingenious idea of stopping the djinn by attempting to shoot the heroine who revived him and who it needs to make a wish. The only person to return from the original film is Andrew Divoff in the title role, whose icy cold, gravel-voiced and darkly magnetic ruthlessness again adds much to the film. The films novel spin is in placing the character in jail where it is amusing to see him still smiling up against hardened killer-types.
Perhaps the oddest thing about the film is that Jack Sholder has turned it into a parable of moral redemption. One has no idea of Sholders personal religious persuasions and the term Christianity is never mentioned once throughout but the heroines basic plot arc becomes a parable about her earning atonement and finding forgiveness for the bad things that she has done. There is a unique scene where in order to combat the djinn she makes an outward display of repentance by taking off her Goth clothing and punkette makeup and dressing as a wholesome girl-next-door type. The only downside is that Holly Fields gives a terribly wimpy non-performance in the part she is so insipid you cannot even remotely take her seriously as a Goth girl.
The one other thing that the first film showcased was an extraordinary display of makeup effects. The sequel only intermittently produces these a cool effect with the Wishmaster rebirthing by emerging out of a wall, a man being squeezed through the bars of a cell and none with the impact of the opening few minutes of Wishmaster. Worse, Jack Sholder adds silly sequences that take the film down to about the level of the average Leprechaun (1993) sequel. There is a very silly sequence where a con wishes he could see his lawyer fuck himself whereupon we see the lawyers back bend over and ... The climax with the Wishmaster getting loose in a Las Vegas casino a riff taken directly from Leprechaun 3 (1995) with a woman excreting coins and people being sliced up with flying playing cards and a razor-tipped roulette wheel is immensely silly.
There were two further sequels with Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell/Wishmaster III: Devilstone (2001) and Wishmaster: The Prophecy Fulfilled (2002).
Jack Sholders other films include:- the slasher film Alone in the Dark (1982), A Nightmare on Elm Street Part II: Freddys Revenge (1985), the alien body-hopping film The Hidden (1987), the nuclear war film By Dawns Early Light (tv movie, 1990), the timeloop film 12:01 (tv movie, 1993), the cloning film Natural Selection/Dark Reflection (tv movie, 1994), the unsold superhero series pilot Generation X (1995), 12 Days of Terror (tv movie, 2004) about a killer shark and the monster movie Arachnid (2001). Sholder was also responsible for directing uncredited additional footage on the problem-ridden Supernova (2000).