William (The Wild Bunch) Holden plays the brother of Gregory Peck (who got gunned down by the cops at the end of the first flick) whose Damien’s legal guardian and the owner of a wealthy business conglomerate. Like the first movie the death scenes are the most memorable parts. This time Damien has a pet raven that causes Sylvia (Beetlejuice) Sydney to have a heart attack and pecks the eyeballs out of a nosy reporter. There’s also a great ice hockey drowning sequence where a guy gets trapped underneath the ice too but the standout scene is when Designing Women’s Meshach Taylor gets cut in half in an elevator. The death by train scene is also pretty tight as well and the surprise ending is especially memorable.
The film is interesting during the scenes where Damien slowly realizes his true nature but it doesn’t fully develop that theme to it’s potential since Damien basically accepts from the get go that he’s the Anti-Christ (although he does cry after melting his cousin’s brain).
Co-starring Lee (Defending Your Life) Grant as Damien’s aunt. Lance (Aliens) Henriksen also puts in a great turn as Damien’s greasy mean ass drill sergeant. Holden actually turned down Peck’s role in the original but signed on to this after the first one was a hit. Director Don (The Island of Dr. Moreau) Taylor replaced original director Mike (Flash Gordon) Hodges (who also co-wrote the script) halfway through shooting. Co-star Robert Foxworth went onto star in the ultimate mutant bear movie, Prophecy the next year.