Lady Blood (2008)

Rating: D+

Dir: Jean-Marc Vincent
Star: Emmanuelle Escourrou, Philippe Nahon, Serge Riaboukine, Serge Riaboukine

This ill-conceived sequel to Baby Blood took its time getting here – about 18 years – and, frankly, wasn’t worth the wait. It gets half a point for using the same actress (Escourrou) to play Yanka, though as her filmography includes bit parts in only three features, I doubt she was otherwise engaged. Bizarrely, the woman responsible for a string of bloody, cannibalistic murders is now a respected police detective. However, when a new string of bloody, cannibalistic murders begins to happen, it soon becomes clear she hasn’t entirely put the past behind her, especially when her partner interviews an old cop, who remembers the previous cases and is, to say the least, startled to find a prime suspect now investigating the latest incidents. Additionally, a group of gangsters are muscling in on the local turf, using power tools to intimidate the current owners of various sleazy establishments.

Yeah. Because what we all thought at the end of Baby Blood was, “That was ok, but it really needed more gangsters.” Written by the director and star, this thrashes around, largely without a clue, replacing the grungy maternal body-horror of its predecessor with… Well, if the original played like Abel Ferrara directing a script by David Cronenberg, this plays more like a rejected Law and Order episode. Part of the problem is that the “baby” is now an external threat, in the body of a man, and so we don’t get the creepy mother-child dialogue – instead, he just roams about, killing and eating people. Most of the scenes don’t advance the story-line, and we never are given much reason to care about Yanka, or do much except wonder about the apparently lax background checks of the French police-force. If the threads – family, creature and gangsters – do finally come together in the final reel, by then you’ll be hoping there’s no part three this side of 2026.