The horror parody film seemed to peak in the 1990s. During that decade, we saw Scream rise to prominence, and Scary Movie churn out a dozen jokes. Even legacy titles, including Halloween: H20 and Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, poked fun at their place in the genre. The post-modern approach to horror storytelling had changed, even if only for a few years. While that genre eventually faded away, horror comedy remained as popular as ever. When Scare Package was released in 2019, it proved extremely popular among horror diehards. Now, its sequel makes its way to Blu-Ray and DVD release. Scare Package II: Rad Chad’s Revenge picks up where the first film left off, and the laughs keep coming.
After the events of the first Scare Package, a group gathers to mourn the death of Rad Chad (Jeremy King). However, the night quickly goes awry when the funeral ends up being a trap. Jessie (Zoe Graham) finds herself battling for survival again while being hunted by a mysterious figure. That figure remains obsessed with horror movies and puts them through Saw-like challenges.
Once again, the anthology feature showcases top-tier comedic sequences. Like last time, the Scare Package II bridges actually contribute towards the final narrative. However, the group assembled are far more enjoyable this time around. Adding actors like Graham Skipper, Rich Sommer, and Shakira Ja’nai Paye raises the ceiling of these sequences. This element of the story really works, and it’s a lot of fun to watch these comedians play with the form.
“Welcome to the Nineties” – Directed by Alexandra Barreto
A play on the Final Girl trope, each of the characters is modeled after an iconic heroine of a major franchise. This might be the funniest sequence, solely in its repurposing of horror iconography and tropes. The meta-joke about the changing horror landscape is well-thought-out, and Barreto paces her sequence to perfection. It gets a little repetitive but undeniably leaves an impression.
“The Night He Came Back Again! Part VI: The Night She Came Back” – Directed by Anthony Cousins
Another winner, this one plays with the silliness of twists in horror franchises as they grow older. As the characters change and grow over the years, long-established truths become important cogs to work around. A character died? No problem! Your monster needs to have a new motivation? Let’s make a character related! Cousins picks up where he left off on Scare Package‘s short “The Night He Came Back Again! Part IV – The Final Kill.” This time, the lega-sequel also comes under fire.
“Special Edition” – Directed by Jed Shepherd
More than other features in the set, “Special Edition” works as a straight horror film. It’s got jokes within it, but the blood and gore effects are undeniable. It creates more tension than any of the other entries as well. With an ensemble that clearly knows what’s being asked of them and Shepherd’s excellent use of tension, “Special Edition” stands out from the pack.
“We’re So Dead” – Directed by Rachele Wiggins
A bunch of teens begins their own little adventure. However, things go terribly wrong. Within the context of Scare Package II: Rad Chad’s Revenge becomes an integral plot point. It also allows for direct references to a series of cult classics and popular hits of the 1980s. Keep an eye out for the references (they’ll matter). Most importantly, it features some next-level makeup effects and is very fun as a result.
The Blu-ray release of Scare Package II certainly showcases the visuals. Without having to worry about the compression of the stream, the visuals pop with brighter colors and more vivid color correction. This does not necessarily change the way you’ll see film as a whole, but it’s nice to see an indie title get this treatment. The sound remains well-curated, although this was never the strong point of the film.
However, Scare Package II takes it to another level with special features. Aaron B. Koontz provides the commentary track, which helps us see how each short fits in with the package. The blooper package comes in just under seven minutes and gives plenty of excellent alt-takes that you’ll wish were in the movie. A twenty-plus minute behind-the-scenes featurette shows how they pieced together the film during COVID, with masks on most of the cast and crew. Another very cool specialty version of the film features old-school pop-ups to explain the references in each scene. This version, titled “Spot the Reference with the Help of Horror Icons” is worth the buy alone.
The Blu-Ray is certainly worth the pickup for any fan who enjoys Scare Package or Scare Package II. Not only does it take you further into the movie, but it’s an excellent way to nerd out with your friends. Considering how much fun this movie is already, we love to see a release get as nerdy as we are. Anyone on the fence should pick this one up sooner rather than later.