Terrifier 2 Director Damien Leone Explains What The Heck Was Going On In That Clown Cafe Sequence

This article contains major spoilers for "Terrifier 2."

If "Terrifier 2" has taught me anything, it's that I would rather face a number of deadly obstacles than ever run into Art the Clown (David Howard Thornton). At least there's the possibility of survival with slasher villains like Jason Voorhees or Freddy Krueger, whereas Art will stop at nothing to obliterate you once he's locked onto your presence. Throughout the film's nearly two and a half-hour runtime, which is unheard of for a slasher flick, we get to see Art dismember folks by means of some jaw-dropping practical gore effects. That's practically what sold the film beyond the traditional horror crowd, who largely knew what they were in for.

Whether it be the harrowing bedroom kill or ferocious final girl Sienna (Lauren LaVera) doing what needs to be done, "Terrifier 2" is built upon one memorably gory sequence after the other. But one of the film's more standout moments involves Sienna waking up in a vibrant location called the Clown Café. The scene is underscored by a real earworm of a jingle sung by Leah Voysey, which sets the mood for a cartoonish nightmare that's only manages to get even weirder.

Given the complicated, yet ambiguous nature of Sienna and her father, I initially interpreted the Clown Café sequence to be an extension of her childhood trauma, with the nightmare world resembling a twisted memory. She's even dressed in a Pippi Longstocking-esque garment too, while sitting in a jungle gym. But according to director Damien Leone, the nightmare has a much more ethereal meaning.

A divine test of courage

On the recently released 4K Blu-ray for "Terrifier 2," Damien Leone spends his director's commentary talking about all of the secrets he had to keep hidden while the film was still in theaters, most notably the Clown Café sequence. On top of it being one of his favorites, according to a report from Bloody Disgusting, Leone describes the scene as "a divine test that manifests itself within Sienna's subconscious." He even talks about how the background extras with suitcases standing next to a flight attendant is also a transcendent reflection of the wings of Sienna's warrior princess Halloween costume.

Going off of how Leone describes it, Sienna's perseverance to survive is like a deranged twist on the story of King Arthur. Rather than trying to lift a sword from stone, she instead has to dig her hands through a box of deadly cereal filled with maggots, glass, and razor blades, which gives her the weapon she needs to deflect Art's mini flamethrower.

It essentially places more weight on her final confrontation with Art in the finale, as Sienna fights tooth and nail to take out the seemingly immortal being of chaos. If that final decapitation was her victory, then the Clown Café was the ultimate test. "If she's not courageous at the end and doesn't decide to fight back against Art, then she will not be the one," says Leone.

I still think there's more to this sequence that Leone is holding over for the inevitable "Terrifier 3," but as it stands, the film is loads of fun, and possibly one of the best spiritual "Nightmare on Elm Street" sequels in ages.

"Terrifier 2" is currently streaming on Screambox.