Reading is fundamental and ultimately useful, only if you don’t let the images of characters and situations in a book sink too deeply into you, to the point where your sub-conscious has a little fun with your head. At least that’s what the boy (Chris Kentimentos) learned in the first “Voices Within”. Here, in the 2nd, he’s back and so is the book, but to little effect as the first film had.
Chapter 2 of this tale, “The Scarecrow Effect”, seems comfortable enough with the conventional “jump” moments that have become an unfortunate mainstay of the mainstream horror genre that we know today. Slowly and slowly, the boy becomes freaked out even more by his surroundings, wanting only to go home and then suddenly, here comes the figure behind him, not wielding a knife or anything, but begging for his help. Real or mere fantasy doesn’t seem to be considerations that matter much here. The music is appropriately spacey to provide that atmosphere of unease, and the burnished camerawork and editing are mildly effective. However, an uncomfortable mix of styles emerge within the course of “The Scarecrow Effect”. Consider it the “Neverending Story” with a horror slant, if you like. But the creeps and jitters can’t be found much anywhere in the dark corners of this tale. Whether there will be more installments remains to be seen, but stopping here seems to be ok.