The horrors of the holidays generally take place at home and the events in Better Watch Out are no exception. Here’s a new vein of Christmas terror to submit to while drinking by the fire.
Teenage babysitter Ashley is set and ready to move, but not until one last gig watching her favorite twelve year old, lovesick Luke. Their last night together abruptly turns from sweet to sour, and both are left drastically changed when the morning comes.
If you’ve watched the trailer beforehand, you’re already predisposed to the twist of the film (unfortunately). If you were lucky enough to be warned or haven’t had the time to check it out- wait. You’ll be a lot smarter for going into the film blind. It’s a good twist, it truly is. It’s a shame it was spoiled, as it stole its own thunder with its advertising.
Having viewed it without any notion of the plot, it’s safe to say that it was unexpected but really, really cool. Luke (Levi Miller) had a mighty challenge to conquer here and it was satisfactorily handled. His best friend, portrayed by Evan Oxenbould, also powered through his role and his natural sense of being the pain-in-the-ass kid shined through. The script didn’t hold back in terms of content and it was appreciated. There’s a lot of twisted things here and there but they never borderline as garish or done for the sake of shock. Everything done by the antagonist was fathomable and that’s what made it scary.
The kill scenes were thankfully not Christmas themed. No icicles through the eyeball, no candy canes through the throat, etc. They were brutal in an old fashioned way, which fit the bill for the killer. Sadly, all the gory bits were kept just shy of the camera and the use of imagination was at large. There wasn’t a lot of cat and mouse going on here; it was rather one sided but the questionable stability of the villain is what built the tension throughout. The concluding moments are definitely cheeky and kept you watching on.
The tone was Christmas out the ass and there were tons decorations and plenty of bumping carols to get you through it (or to convince your family to watch it).
So if you’re sick of crazy Santa Clauses and rabid elves and European monsters, give Better Watch Out a spin. After all, nothing is scarier than people during the holiday season.