The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death Movie Poster Image
Creepy but unnecessary sequel deals with war, kids in peril.
  • PG-13
  • 2015
  • 98 minutes

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 12 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

A couple of positive messages about forgiveness and moving forward. The characters who forgive themselves are able to act bravely. Edward's motherly advice is that good thoughts overcome bad dreams.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Eve clearly loves the children she teaches, and she tries her hardest to get them to safety. Mrs. Hogg is strict, but only as a way to cope with the horror of having a husband and sons in WWII.

Violence

Many creepy and disturbing scenes, usually involving children's deaths. Two orphans die: A boy gets caught in barbed wire, and a girl first tries to strangle herself with skin but is saved at the last minute; later, she kills herself by inhaling toxic fumes. Faces and figures pop out unexpectedly, and the Woman in Black is frightening. She screams and is shown hanging and lurking in rooms, usually about to touch children or adults. A boy nearly drowns but is saved, and another character sacrifices himself to save others. Set during World War II, the movie shows German bomber planes dropping bombs on London and in the countryside.

Sex

A man and woman kiss, and she recalls getting pregnant out of wedlock.

Language

Insults, name-calling: "baby," "coward," "battle axe," "godforsaken." Also "damn," "rubbish."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A soldier nervously smokes a cigarette in a couple of scenes.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Woman in Black 2, the sequel to The Woman in Black, is set decades later, during World War II. Like the original, the sequel -- which lacks the first movie's star, Daniel Radcliffe -- includes the frightening specter of the titular Woman in Black, who screams, pops up creepily, and leads children to their deaths. Three characters die, two of them children, in disturbing scenes: One is caught in barbed wire, and the other inhales toxic fumes. There's also a repeated flashback to a sad, frantic birth scene and moments when bombs drop on London and the English countryside. But language is mild ("damn," "godforsaken"), and the only sexual content is a brief kiss.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 4, 8, and 12 year old Written bythesmartwealthymom February 18, 2015

The Woman In Black 2: Dumb, Silly and only older teens!

My 12 year old daughter begged me to take her to see this film! I saw the trailers and thought it was really dumb so I said, sure! We want on opening weekend an... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old March 1, 2015

Great horror sequel is dark and has some very scary scenes.

Parents need to consider that this sequel has just about the same level of horror and threat as the first one. There are various scenes which will scare childre... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bylandontube1 January 6, 2015

SCARY JUMPS, MATURE THEMES

I thought that Woman in Black: Angel of Death was just fine. It was dramatically different from the fist film, however. There is quite a bit of violence but its... Continue reading

What's the story?

THE WOMAN IN BLACK 2: ANGEL OF DEATH takes place decades after the original -- during the bombing of London in World War II. Young schoolteacher Eve Parkins (Phoebe Fox) and headmistress Jean Hogg (Helen McCrory) head to Eel Marsh House with a group of children -- one of whom, little Edward (Oaklee Pendergast), was just orphaned during the Blitz. Eel Marsh House, of course, is haunted by the anything-but-gone ghost of the Woman in Black, who takes a shining to Edward and begins her crusade of leading children to their death ... unless Eve can stop her.

Is it any good?

Director Tom Harper's horror sequel suffers from being unnecessary and also pretty boring in the frights department. Although there are a few jump-worthy moments and predictable scary-movie cliches -- creaky floorboards, terrifying dolls, and a rocking chair that seems to move on its own -- the movie doesn't work as a whole. The actors are all capable -- McCrory (probably best known for playing Narcissa Malfoy) knows how to play a stern-faced "battle axe," Fox is quite adept at being a doe-eyed ingenue who loves her school kids, and Jeremy Irvine is as appealing as always as a young bomber pilot -- but the plot is thin, and the scares are nearly identical to the ones in the first movie.

Once it was unveiled in the second half of the first movie, the Woman in Black's story lost much of its horror movie juice. She's still upset and still wants to kill children as punishment for the death of her long-dead son. Anyone who saw the first film will see almost all the plot twists before they unfold. The ghost's decision to focus on young Edward is obvious the moment it's explained that he's gone selectively mute from the sudden death of his parents. Halfway through the movie, the subplot between the fighter pilot and the school teacher would have made for a better romance than Woman in Black 2 makes for a horror film.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how this sequel furthers the Woman in Black legend. Do you like the way it continued the story? Do you think there will/should be more installments in the story?

  • Discuss the difference between psychological horror films and bloodier slasher horror films. Which ones do you prefer, and why? What's scarier -- the stuff you see, or the stuff you don't?

  • Do you think the violence in The Woman in Black 2 is more upsetting because it involves children? What are some other horror movies that feature possessed or ghostly children?

Movie details

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