Movie: You’re Next
My Rating: 4 stars
Now, this is actually a pretty exciting horror film. I was surprised, because I’ve seen so many of these slasher flicks at this point that I’ve become a little bit desensitized to them. This kind of movie tends to be pretty formulaic to begin with, so if you watch too many of them, they lose the ability to startle you. So, it’s always fun to let myself get a little bit scared again. I’m not sure whether I intentionally took a break from this genre, or if I just got distracted by a few trashy dance movies. But, the hiatus definitely did the trick.
This movie also has one other advantage over your classic slash-‘em-up flick, and that’s a sense of humor. This isn’t a horror-comedy. I’d still classify it as a pure slasher. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to point to any outright “jokes.” (And really, a lot of horror-comedies films are ruined when the jokes are laid on a little too thick). But, there’s an underlying sense of black humor in this script that keeps the film from being cheesy or clichéd. It really works, and it made a noticeable difference for me.
This is your classic “family is tormented by a band of murderers while staying at their isolated vacation home” story. It’s a well-worn plot device. But, this movie really only uses it as the framework for the story, and doesn’t let it serve as an autopilot. Erin is meeting her boyfriend’s family for the first time on this weekend getaway. It’s pretty unnerving—spending a whole weekend in the same house, under the intense scrutiny of your partner’s parents. That sure doesn’t sound like something I’d like to do. But, she doesn’t have to put up with that for long, because the killing begins pretty soon after their arrival. And, the bandits seem to be making pretty quick work of this uptight, WASPy family. But, this kind of attacker usually expects their victims to cower in corners. They aren’t counting on their targets actually fighting back. So, when Erin does, the killers are thrown off guard. But, which side is ultimately going to be better at their job?
I really enjoyed this movie. It’s been a long time since I’ve had the pleasure of sitting on the edge of my seat like this. The story is tight. The tone feels right with that added element of a sense of humor. And, the production value looks really great. So, I definitely recommend this one to you if you like horror films. The script even manages kill off their victims in some pretty horrifying, imaginative, new ways. Scary!