Originally written by Daniel Kurland for Screen Rant
The original The Boy flew under many people’s radars, but Brahms: The Boy II is ready to shake things up with a fresh story and a slightly new look for its titular tiny terror.
William Brent Bell’s The Boy told an unnerving story about a nannying opportunity that soon turns into a nightmare with Brahms front and center through it all. The Boy made enough of a disturbing mark on audiences that Bell has been allowed to make a sequel that pushes his idea and his doll to even crazier places. Brahms: The Boy II pits a fragile family, in particular the child, Jude (Christopher Convery), against Brahms in his manipulative ways. What initially seems like an innocent toy for Jude quickly turns into so much more.
Brahms: The Boy II takes some creative risks and liberties with Brahms and the chaos that he’s capable of. The vengeful doll mentally manipulates this family and has strength beyond his unassuming appearance. However, even Brahms’ doll veneer becomes considerably creepier than before, explains Convery in an exclusive interview with ScreenRant:
All of the scenes with me and the doll, Brahms, were a bit of a challenge. When I first met Brahms I thought he was so creepy. In the first movie he's made out of porcelain, but in this one he's made out of silicone. He has this really human-like skin and these realistic-looking eyes, so Brahms really gets an upgrade There's so much detail on him that helps make him look like an actual human. It's so creepy.
Convery got to be up close and personal in a way where he can truly appreciate the doll’s disturbing look, but even from the film’s trailer there’s more of a palpable dread to Brahms this time around. There’s something to be said for a basic porcelain look for a doll that gains a level of creepiness because it feels pulled from the real world and it’s not supposed to be scary. It’s a tactic that definitely works well enough for The Conjuring universe’s Annabelle, even though that’s not how the original “haunted doll” looked.
There was nothing wrong with Brahms’ original appearance, but as these movies toy with the idea that Brahms is a living person, it makes a lot more sense to go with the ultra-realistic silicone approach. It makes it feel even more like this is a real person that’s been turned into a doll, versus some doll that’s come to life. It’s not unusual for character designs to change between sequels, with Jason’s many different masks from the Friday the 13th series being a prime indication, but it looks like Brahms: The Boy II is satisfied with Brahms’ new look. Now it just remains to be seen if any future sequel will continue to mix up the character’s appearance or stick with this approach.
Brahms: The Boy II opens at Regal this Friday, February 21st.