The Tag-Along 2 begins with a highly effective cold open featuring a man menaced by a little girl who’s face seems to be constructed of an unholy combination of nightmare and pure terror (and the worst parts of both at that) in the deep dark woods! Following that we meet social worker Shu-fen (Rainie Yang), a woman dealing with both inexplicable cases (like the woman who keeps her rune covered daughter locked in a room filled with talismans to ward of the demons she is sure is coming for her offspring) and her knocked-up teenage daughter. After Shu-fen tries unsuccessfully to convince her daughter to get an abortion, the teen turns up missing…with surveillance cameras revealing she was led away by a mysterious child dressed in red. Soon the trail leads to a reportedly haunted forest (is it a spoiler to just say the damn thing actually is…I mean, look at the art for this fright flick…) which also happens to contain an abandoned hospital and amusement park. As you may surmise, our heroine will be in for the fight of her life to attempt to rescue her daughter and end the supernatural menace that lies in the forest (and end some of that maternal guilt as well)!
The Tag-Along 2 has a lot going for it; it’s packed with good old fashioned jump scares, some delightfully creepy design and effects work, some classic and well realized spooky locations, and most surprisingly, some rather poignant commentaries about motherhood. Also on hand are some wonderfully atmospheric cinematography and sound design, and some great acting, especially from Yang that keeps things believable no matter how outlandish the events onscreen become. Of particular note is the fact that if you haven’t seen The Tag-Along you absolutely will not be lost here, as this film tells it’s own complete story (though a character from the first film does return to offer a nice closure to that chapter).
Finally, and undoubtedly as a total surprise to most everyone that reads these revoltin’ reviews, The Tag-Along 2 featured CG effects I actually enjoyed (though admittedly they do get a tad cartoony), with the brunt of them relegated to realizing our ghastly child in red in an effective, and horrifying, manner…I know, I couldn’t believe it either my creeps!
As for the negatives, The Tag-Along 2 tells many different tales simultaneously, and can at times seem a tad disjointed. Overall, the narrative is solid, but there are a few minor instances where the focus shift becomes noticeable.
If you are looking for a great ghost story (or inexplicably enough, effective ruminations on what a total bitch motherhood can be at times) with good ol’ fashioned jump scares and solid effects, you should most assuredly feast your putrid peepers on The Tag-Along 2, it’s a creepy/cool spook show with a bit more gravitas than most!
For more on The Tag-Along 2 from Horror Fuel, head here!