Netflix had a few successes when it comes to producing Horror movies. Hush, The Invitation and recently Gerald’s Game come to mind. And just last Friday the 13th they released a new scary movie. The Babysitter.
What’s it about?
The Babysitter is about Cole (Judah Lewis), a boy who has probably the best Babysitter ever. Bee (Samara Weaving) is hot, almost as nerdy as he is and has his back when it comes to bullies. But it wouldn’t be a horror movie if there wasn’t something bad about Bee. When spying on her after his bedtime, Cole realizes that she and her friends started a satanic cult, sacrificing a boy right in his living room. So he has to fight off a vast group of teenagers who all try to kill him.
In a lot of ways it’s similar to Tucker and Dale vs Evil. The premise, or a similar premise, has probably happened in many movies before this. But teenagers acting crazy and being funny in a fun and referential kind of way is just great. The group of murderous teenagers are scary, yet hilarious. It also plays a little like Home Alone, but not too much; it doesn’t feel like a rip-off. But it surely has to be inspired by it.
Other than Bee there are 4 other teenagers in the group, each with their own archetypal personality:
- John (Andrew Bachelor from Meet the Blacks) as the African American comic relief (yes, even in a horror comedy we get a comic relief),
- Sonya (Hana Mae Lee from Pitch Perfect), the Asian silent yet crazy girl,
- Max (Robbie Amell from Arq), the athletic jock
- Allison (Bella Thorne), the self absorbed cheerleader.
While these characters could be boring and two dimensional, they are not. They manage to actually make these characters realistic enough that you actually care about them. In good old horror fashion they each try their luck at killing Cole, so each of them gets their time to shine. And they all do shine.
The acting was great. Not only were the teenagers convincing and delivered every line in the perfect way, but Judah Lewis and Samara Weaving were really perfect. They had the right chemistry that you would actually believe that this teenage girl actually enjoys hanging out with the nerdy kid Cole. I didn’t know anything about either of them beforehand, I had heard of Home and Away but never watched it. But I’ll be sure to keep looking for them in future movies.
Is it Scary?
It is a little scary. It’s shocking at parts, surprising. But it is not that scary. It’s about as scary as Tucker and Dale vs Evil or Cabin in the Woods. There’s quite a few of slasher-typical stalking which is always a good thing.
Also the gore is great. There is not that much blood, but when it’s done, it is done really well. They use the gore for maximum impact instead of just trying to shock as often as possible.
The Babysitter actually managed to surprise by being original, well done, well acted and self aware. It starts off like a typical teenage-comedy, but turns into a great modern slasher film. It is well shot and most importantly entertaining. The runtime is only 85 minutes, they showed what they had and wanted to show and that was it.
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