You are cordially invited to the wedding a century in the making! It’s one the guests are positively dying to get into! And the reception after the ceremony? It’s literally on fire! But what about the bride’s boyfriend? You know, the guy that isn’t the murderous scarecrow that she’s marrying! Well, he’s been tied up and will be quasi-officiating it despite being unconscious!
And while the nuptials are taking place in the barn the scarecrow has been killing people in, he’s enough of a traditionalist that he makes sure to fulfill the “something borrowed” aspect of things by stealing the boyfriend’s ring to give to his sobbing, I mean blushing, bride!
It’s the sequel no one was demanding and in fact, for anyone who had the misfortune to see Curse of the Scarecrow, it’s the continuation of a story they were praying they would never have to see! Yes, the straw man known for wearing bright new denim and a fashionable burlap sack over his head while terrorizing assorted unknown actors of varying degrees of ineptitude on a farm in the English countryside is back!
Anyone who saw the first movie should have the mythos committed to memory since that movie repeated Scarecrow’s origin multiple times. Guy wrongly accused of stealing, strung up in the field, starved, eyes pecked out by crows, comes back as evil scarecrow every 20 years for 48 hours looking for his bride. (She was also killed, being burned alive in the barn.)
The family who own the land Scarecrow putters around on with his pitchfork fancy themselves as protectors, in an effort to stop Scarecrow from killing folks. Based on this movie and the first one, they do a pretty piss poor job at it, frequently getting killed themselves for their trouble.
For a movie series that repeatedly bores the audience with its dumb premise (one gets the sense that the writer LOVES the backstory and just can’t stop herself from showing it off), the story then takes every chance it can to ignore it. For instance, why would you have scarecrows on your farm if you knew a scarecrow was going to come alive and start killing everyone? And if he only comes back once every twenty years, why does he appear in Curse of the Scarecrow, then again at the beginning of this film and then yet again a year later during the main part of this film? You may as well start charging him rent at this rate!
Recently demoted radio host May (an utterly pointless sequence since it doesn’t really matter to the story) gets a call that she’s inherited a farm after everyone previously living there have been missing for a year and are declared dead. May was adopted and doesn’t know her family’s history as failed scarecrow wranglers. There is also talk about how she doesn’t like her adopted mother, which again is just filler babble as nothing comes of that either.
She packs up her friends and heads out to the country to check out her new farm. She isn’t sure whether she will keep it since she thinks farming might be fun (spoken like a true city slicker who’s only farming experience is visiting a pumpkin patch once a year) or will sell it.
Despite the farm being vacant for a year (except for the homeless guy living there, but in keeping with the rank amateurishness of the whole affair, his sole reason to be in the story is to give Scarecrow someone to kill), it is still in tip top condition. In fact, while there’s plenty of chickens living there and even a horse, there’s a decided dearth of explanation as to who has been taking care of them for the last year. (How much better would this movie be if there were scenes of Scarecrow feeding the chickens and riding the horse?)
As May and her friends make themselves at home, things start to turn up that make them think something odd has happened at the farm. More absurdly lazy writing follows as the friends notice blood in the barn and a gun just laying around, apparently for a whole year just waiting to be discovered. All this despite, as one character admits, the police already having searched the area. There’s even a handy dandy diary that May finds and reads (via an overly dramatic voice over from the character who wrote it) as well as a shoe box full of clearly fake newspaper clippings about Scarecrow’s exploits and a picture of Scarecrow’s bride who – gasp – looks exactly like May!
Following interminable scenes of talking sprinkled here and there with Scarecrow making the most minimal of efforts in his killing spree (snapped neck, turned a gun on someone, and the expected pitchfork stabbings are what you can generally expect) with the exception of one person he dispatches by repeatedly ramming a horse stall door into her neck, it climaxes in similar fashion as the first film – by having people set on fire. And like the first film, it does this without actually showing anyone on fire, thereby perfectly encapsulating this film.
Bride of Scarecrow is a movie with all the faults of its predecessor, but made worse because the people making the film were either unable to improve things for budgetary reasons or just weren’t smart enough to realize what needed to be fixed. Having one of the main characters suddenly decide to commit suicide in an effort to stop the curse, just leaves you feeling cheated and wondering what the point of suffering through this uninspired barnyard bomb and whether it’s too late for an annulment.
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