Crazed, serial-killing pig-hunter Mick Taylor is back, cleaning up The Outback with his trusty blade and quick-fire wit. He still hates foreigners, now more so than ever, which is pretty much all the plot you need for a killer sequel. It's easy to criticise Wolf Creek 2 for falling prey to sequelitis. Like a lot of films before it, particularly in the horror genre, Greg McLean has taken his potty-mouth bogeyman and made him the star. The same thing happened with Freddy, Jason and Chucky, and we all know what happened next. Fortunately for us, it's been eight years since we last saw Mick, so his return to the big screen is more than welcome. It's like having an old friend for dinner.
With Mick taking centre stage it would be easy for McLean to forget the cardinal rule of horror films; give the audience somebody to root for. Horror films lose their grip if the audience doesn't care for the good guy, and more often than not the film becomes a mindless exercise in body counts and bloodshed. While it would be fair to say the first few victims fall foul of this, the introduction of British backpacker Paul Hammersmith (Ryan Corr) changes the dynamic completely. First of all, he's a man. Which is still pretty rare in the slasher sub-genre. Secondly, he's pretty damn smart. Again, not the most common occurrence in the world of horror.
John Jarratt clearly has a lot of love for his psychotic creation, even if he does push credibility to the limit at times, but he gets away with it because Mick Taylor is such a pleasure to be around. Wolf Creek 2 comes into its own when the game of cat and mouse begins, with both characters upping the ante at every turn. McLean may have dispensed with the drip feed of terror that made the original so appealing, but the Looney Tune escapades of part two are difficult to fault. With any other franchise I would probably criticise the change of direction Wolf Creek has made, but in all honesty, I was having too much fun to care.
Wolf Creek 2 is a blast from start to finish. I would love to see Mick go up against an even bigger psycho in part three, but we might have to wait another eight years for that. Bigger, bolder and funnier than the original, Wolf Creek 2 really shouldn't be this entertaining. What's more, the final scene is spot on. Definitely worth a look.