Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

WHY I HATE HOME INVASION MOVIES SO, SO MUCH... BUT I KIND OF LIKED THIS ONE. GO FIGURE.



You're A Dumbass - What, That's Not It? Okay, Okay, Don't Get Testy...



You're Next (2011)

In a word? Stupid. I hate home invasion movies because they're stupid. The setup is stupid, the family is usually stupid, and you have to endure 90 some minutes of stupid people trying to kill more stupid people for stupid reasons. Stupid. Notice I didn't say DUH? That's 'cause home invasion movies are a special kind of stupid that insults the DUH formula. Stupid.





Okay, so maybe I was a little hasty...
Oh, and you film maker people who think you're sooooo clever to use loud and annoying brass sections to promote tension? I HATE TUBAS!!! I don't know anybody who would sit and listen to a concert mostly featuring tubas (or any other large brass instrument for that matter). KNOCK THAT SHIT OFF! That's called irritation, not tension.



C'mon, this is a bed and breakfast, not a house, right?
Buuuuut.... this one had parts that were almost good, gory, and (dare I say it), funny? So I'll be telling you about it but if you want to watch it first, better do it 'cause, you know, spoilers. It is currently streaming on Netflix (who advertised it like it was handed directly down to them from God or something...).

Adam Wingard does a decent job of taking this movie and making it into something a bit different. You've got some good gore, even a bit of comedy with an ending both predictable and yet satisfying. Watch it knowing you're not just going to be seeing a copy of 'The Strangers' or 'The Purge'.




Now let's all hold hands before
we start killing each other...
This is about a family I wanted dead when they first sat down to dinner, and I wanted them dead FAST. And why not? This is a story where the family shows up at a huuuuge house nobody normal owns anywhere ever for their parent's anniversary. The front door is actually open when the parents first show up, although the house has not been used in quite a while. But the movie has to start so the father shrugs and goes in anyway. THEY. WILL. DIE.



I feel like I'm being watched... good
 thing we live in the middle of nowhere...
It's covered in dust and sheets and yet one woman working by herself manages not only to clean this monstrosity, she has a ten-course dinner ready to eat although there are no maids, cooks or other help - and these people are NOT the self-sufficient kind so, yeah, STUPID. They don't even know that the only neighbor they have for miles is dead because... uh... they just don't care I guess.




Okay, we have to wait out here HOW long?
So it was obvious that I wasn't going to get deaths fast - this movie is 94 irritating minutes long. One of the family members has a girlfriend who has an Australian accent. That instantly told me that she's gonna be important in that 'I'm not a stupid American so I'm gonna survive' kind of way. 



Yes folks, we have a winner...
Aaaaand my horror movie worksheet (patent pending) was pretty much finished before 20 minutes of the movie had gone by. All I needed was the order of deaths, and maybe where the gore got good (not great, but there were some good shots). And some humor believe it or not.


This was another one of those movies that seemed to polarize people's opinions. Critics either thought it was the wittiest, neatest, twistiest home invasion movie around - or they thought it was the dumbest, most predictable, biggest waste of time around. Guess which direction I was leaning? 

Although I got a chuckle or two from some Stooges-worthy funny bits (violent, but funny) and Home Alone material they ripped off, mostly I was heaving sighs at the impossibility yet predictability of the whole thing. Okay first - Mousketeer Roll Call!





Okay, okay, that's enough child labor violations and potential child molesters...


'YOU'RE NEXT' ROLL CALL!!! Here's our list: Erin, the gal with the accent and the surety of living through this movie (Sharni Vinson), her milquetoast boyfriend (look it up) Crispian (A. J. Bowen), his parents Aubrey (Barbara Crampton) and Paul (Rob Moran), his brother, Drake (Joe Swanberg), Drake's wife, Kelly (Margaret Laney), his other brother, Felix (Nicholas Tucci), Felix's girlfriend Zee (Wendy Glenn), and his younger sister Aimee (Amy Seimetz) and her boyfriend, Tariq-don't-get-too-attached-to-him-wink-wink (Ti West).



Would you guys WAIT - I'm getting to you!
This huuuuge house is dad's 'retirement project' since he retired from a defense contractor with an 'insane severance package' and is ridiculously wealthy, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with the house - it's perfect. STUPID.

Rice Crispies... err, I mean Crispian and his girlfriend Erin show up the first night, the rest show up the next day for their parent's 35 year anniversary. Now this is supposed to be the first time they've gathered together in a long time, but on the mantel is a picture that was obviously taken within the past week. STUPID. All sit down for the big dinner that nobody could have made in time and it takes them a good, oh, two or three minutes to start fighting...



What? Do I have something in my teeth?
What a surprise. This family hates each other. THEY. WILL. DIE.

Our first victim: While the others bicker, Tariq inexplicably looks out the window and thinks he sees something (Even though the light inside would make it impossible to see through the darkness outside - try it. Just see your own room, don't cha?) so he walks up to it. He did see something (says the script). A crossbow apparently, because as he turns around, a wooden arrow is penetrating his skull. Hmm, they must have borrowed arrows from Cotton Mouth Joe. "Who?", you ask? Don't. That's in another review.

And let's not dwell on the fact that NOBODY heard the glass break - AND the fact that the window would have shattered, not have a small piece tinkle to the floor from the arrow, or we'll be here forever.



Yeah, let's send the girl out with the killers, good idea!
Another arrow comes through the window and gets Drake in the back - but he lives. Now all are scrambling to get away from the table, because obviously the food pisses somebody off so... yeah. 

All check their cell phones and we get a small change in the normal horror movie rule book - instead of no signal because they're in a horror movie, they guess that somebody has a jammer - illegal but available on the internet (thanks for that information guys).

Erin decides to send a 911 text (You can do that?) and when it doesn't go through, she sets her phone to keep trying (don't ask me if that actually works, I've got a dumb phone).

So they send out Aimee 'cause, you know, anyone named Aimee deserves to die. Just kidding, look at my name - I'm the last to throw any stones. But her efforts are for naught and so is her throat when she hits the wire strung tight across the doorway. That's three.

Erin springs into action to the puzzlement of the others - she seems to know just what to do. I wouldn't mind having her around during the big ZA. While she does that, the grieving mother goes upstairs to take a nap. Bad idea. A waiting intruder in a mask (there's a tiger, a lamb and a fox) is there to stab her with a huge machete. Kind of overkill for an older lady... meh. And he leaves it there. How many did they bring with them anyway?




Home Depot must sell these by the dozen...
Kelly discovers her, panics and runs next door to the (dead) neighbor's house. A killer has followed her however, so she's shoved through the glass door then gets an ax to the head. These guys have really good arm strength - axes and knives in skulls? That's hard to do. Mind you, I'm not speaking from experience...

Crispian discovers their cars are disabled and flees the property on foot to seek help (wink-wink). Erin is attacked but kicks the attacker in the balls (remember ladies, it's balls and eyes - always) and makes sure to kill him A LOT with a meat tenderizer. I guess he's ready to cook. Paul finds that the intruders have been in the house for a while. There are pee bottles (ewww, c'mon, the place had a billion bathrooms, massive DUH), food, sleeping bags... but alas, his time is done.



Which 'cut' do you want.... what? Why are you groaning?
In front of his son Felix and girlfriend Zee, his throat is cut. Felix is pissed. Because he loves his dad? Nah, because the masked whosawhatsiz killed his dad in front of him and he got blood on his face. See, they wanted the family money now instead of waiting for an inheritance and so maneuvered this little shindig. Massive DUH.

Erin and Drake are attacked by another of the masked whosawhatsiz but Erin stabs him in the shoulder and he jumps out the window. Erin and Zee (pretending to help) set up some traps they learned from watching Home Alone. Just kidding. Erin confides to Zee that her father raised her in the Outback in Australia in a survivalist camp, her mom moving her to the US when she was 15. 



Yeah, just die already!
Felix and Drake go to the basement where Felix stabs Drake to death with many screwdrivers. This was definitely my favorite line in the movie: Felix has stabbed Drake a billion times but Drake just stands there and looks at him so Felix finally says, "Would you just die already? This is hard enough for me." I think I peed a little from laughing.

Erin goes upstairs to find Paul, but discovers his dead body and is attacked by a masked whosawhatsiz. She escapes by jumping out of the window, impaling her leg on glass. She runs anyway, is attacked again, but manages to get back into the house for some reason. I guess she thinks she can save the rest. She finds a place to hide and thus hears the whole movie plot in a convenient sentence or two.

Her hiding place is found out, however, when the text she sent to 911 has now gone through, the return message saying they're on their way making enough noise for the others to hear.


...Wouldn't that guy stink by now?...
She is attacked and kills another masked whosawhatsiz with a screwdriver to the head. Now we have a quick trap-set-up-montage for the other three... or is it four...

Felix and Zee take off with the crossbow - the one masked whosawhatsiz left alive goes into house to get her... he has a machete, in the dark. She has a camera to 'flash' in order to see... but the flash was on 'auto' to draw him to it, so he walks by her and she clobbers him with a log and bashes his head in. She's really good at bashing heads.



Just wait, this isn't the good part...
She's hurt, covered in blood, and Felix gets her with the crossbow - doesn't slow her down a bit. Probably because the idiot missed. Getting back to the kitchen, she grabs Zee who's trying to use the last arrow on her when Felix comes in - she throws a pan of liquid on the stove at him but it wasn't hot - didn't prevent him from slipping though - are we supposed to laugh?



...this is...
Well I did at the next part which wins my 'Most original kill in a dumbass home invasion film' award: She's attacked by Felix yet again and so she grabs the blender and breaks it on his head, plugs it in and turns it upside down...



Pfffft... ahem. Sorry, almost peed a little again. I've got to see a doctor about that. Anywho, with the boyfriend getting scrambled brains, the girlfriend gets yet another of Erin's knives to the top of her head. Then Erin hears Felix' telephone ringing. She answers without speaking...

Yup, it's snap, crackle, and pop. Umm, I mean it's Crispian, asking if all the icky parts are over so he can come back inside. See, he's a pacifist (apparently that means I won't kill you but I'll pay someone else to do it) and can't stand the sight of blood. He wonders why Felix doesn't answer, and sees a very bloody Erin as he comes inside. 

He stammers an excuse about how she was supposed to be totally unharmed, the only witness alive with a 'clean record' (?!?) to tell the police about the 'unknown' intruders killing everybody. He then finishes his explanation with my second most favorite line in the movie:

"How were we supposed to know that you were really good at killing people?"

She responds calmly and properly... by stabbing him in the throat. And gets shot for her troubles - the boys in blue have finally come. 



Right between his beady little eyes...
Uh, scratch that. ONE police officer showed up, looked in a broken window and immediately assumed this was all Erin's fault and shot her - in the shoulder, natch. He then calls for backup (?!?) and starts to come in the front door. Erin yells for him to stop, having booby-trapped it but...

I'm sure John Hughes is revolcarse en la tumba. Whaddya mean who the hell is John Hughes? You're obviously up waaay past your bedtime. Get going and don't forget to BRUSH YOUR TEETH!