Title: Trees 2: The Root of All Evil

Also known as:

Year: 2004

Genre: Comedy / Horror

Language: English

Runtime: 101 min

Director: Michael Pleckaitis

Writer: Michael Pleckaitis, Jim Lawter

IMDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0419098/

It's now winter in the quite town of Hazelville, and everyone is still trying to recover from the Memorial Day weekend from hell. Especially Ranger Cody, who continues to have nightmares and wet the bed after killing the Great White Pine. Only there is a new terror coming to Hazelville, as the lumberjacks bring in Christmas trees to sell, that they happened to take from a restricted area owned by the NFS who have been doing some top secret testing on trees.

Our thoughts:
Like any good horror movie, a sequel is sure to follow, though "Trees 2: The Root of all Evil" has a tough road ahead considering how high the bar was set with "Trees". It does start off on the right foot though as it has a different story and isn't just rehash of the first movie. Which is more than I can say for the sequels to the movie it was a parody of. Not only is there a different story, but Michael Pleckaitis manages to bring back the original cast, even side characters that may have been in the original movie for just a few minutes.

It is now winter in the small little Vermont town, that is still trying to recover from their summer nightmare with a killer Great White Pine. Since Christmas is just around the corner, the lumberjacks need a way to make money and what better way is there than selling Christmas trees. Thanks to their illegal logging in a government restricted area of the woods, they unknowingly bring a truckload of trouble to the town...That's right. Killer Christmas trees. Hey, why not? I mean we've had a movie about killer elves, killer Santa's, and killer snowmen. So, why not a movie about deadly Christmas trees? (Now if we can just get someone to make a movie about killer reindeer...)

What I really liked about "Trees 2" was the fact that it is no longer a parody movie, but simply its own comedy-horror movie. Oh sure, the tongue-in-cheek humor is still present, with small homages here and there for certain movies and some slight ribbing, other than that though this is a whole new ball of wax. Sure, some of the plot-points aren't anything original; government experimenting gone wrong causing mutation and deadly results. The heros of the last movie are aware of the rising danger even though nobody wants to believe them, since nobody ever learns their lesson from the first movie. Doesn't really hurt the movie though, because the concept of killer Christmas trees destroying a town is original enough that it makes up for any cliché or any redundant elements.

The humor is pretty much the same as the first; keeping a serious tone no matter how ridiculous and absurd the story maybe. Unfortunately it does take a step back by adding in some unnecessary elements to provide for more jokes which end up falling flat, simply because its too stupid. Specifically, the Deputy Ranger, Dusty. He was mostly a background character in the first, but here he becomes one of the main characters because he is asked to watch over a town investors blind daughter. Naturally since he is nothing more than a sidekick, he is pretty clueless to whatever is going in a scene. So anytime he is on screen, the scene simply boils down to, "Look at how stupid and pathetic Dusty is. Oh that boy, when will he ever learn?" which of course we are suppose to laugh but these moments at best will only ever get pity chuckle. As bad as that is though, the worst comes in the form of two men trapped on a ski-lift. Why? I dunno. They serve no purpose in the movie, other than to appear as a transition between scenes and possibly to provide a bit of humor, incase too much time has passed between jokes that actually relate to the story. Oh sure they might get a laugh out of every other person watching the movie, but really, you'll just be sitting their wondering why the movie continues to cut back to these two pointless characters.

While the humor may have taken a step back, the budget and overall quality has taken a step forward. Now I'm not sure what the budget difference is between the two movies, but it is apparent that "Trees 2" had a bigger one, or atleast more options at their disposal. A single tree being puppeteered has now been replaced by a small mass of CGI generated trees. So yes, that means low-budget computer effects and we all know how well those look. Here though, it all works in the movies favor, just like the bad jokes and ridiculous story, the laughable CGI only helps to make the movie much more entertaining. Sure we're laughing at the movie rather than with it, but the movie is still making you laugh so there for, it is obviously doing the job it meant to do.

Even though "Trees 2" isn't quite as good as its predecessor in terms of humor, it is just as fun and entertaining. Plus if you're going to watch the first movie, why not watch the second one as well? Especially when looking at all of the goddamn awful holiday horror movies that are out there, that try to be serious. Why not watch one that really is only trying to make you laugh and be a fun watch?

Positive things:
- Even though it's a sequel, its just as fun as the original.
- Not so much a parody anymore, but still has plenty of good-original jokes.
- They managed to bring back everyone from the first movie.
Negative things:
- Some blood has been included but still just not enough.
- Helen Cody. Bitch.
- The ending is left open for an obvious sequel, but it doesn't appear that a third "Trees" movie will ever be made.

Gore: 1/5
Nudity: 0/5
Story: 3/5
Effects: 2.5/5
Comedy: 3/5

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