You’re Next (2013)
What’s It About: Wow. Where do I start on this one? Hmm. I could count up all of the Deus ex machinas or I could take the easier route and count up all of the horror movie staples that were implemented/copied. Know what? I’ll just throw them in where necessary.
The movie starts out with the apotheosis of horror movie clichés: a couple having sex. Their moans penetrate (rimshot) the opening credits for fuck’s sake. Said male half does his business quickly and gets up to take a shower leaving the pretty young lass alone and unsatisfied. Instead of staying in bed wondering where she went wrong in life, she decides to confront her quandary by walking downstairs half naked to the kitchen to imbibe a well-deserved Screwdriver. She of course notices that the patio door is slightly ajar, and after staring at it for several seconds – closes it. Whoa. White knuckled yet?
She is then dispatched in a way that doesn’t need describing, we only need to see that the oldest argument about horror movies is used here as a setup: sex = death. Captain come-quick gets out of the shower, finds the girl’s body and is wiped out in kind. We’re off and running.
We are then introduced to the most uncharismatic, and boring couple ever to hit celluloid. After a minute of their flat and senseless banter in the car I wanted to don an animal mask and kill them. After they arrive at their secluded house naturally blaming workmen for their unlocked door – we are then introduced to the obvious at-first-sight protagonist Erin. Who, by the way should have been named Jaime-Lee and wore a t-shirt that said in bold letters, “Final Girl”.
The rest of the family shows up blah blah blah, they don’t all get along blah blah blah, and they sit down to dinner to celebrate the folks’ anniversary. Now at this point, I was kinda like, “Cool, this might become a Clue meets Ten Little Indians meets slasher movie” type thing. It didn’t. Stereotypes are set; hints are almost shouted at you, and then the killing starts before soup is served. If you can’t figure out where the rest of the movie is going from the first arrow flung, you definitely need to re-watch the classic slashers. Honestly, I figured out most of it before the first boyfriend hit the floor.
And now, as George Carlin once said, I hope you’re ready for a little random anger.
Here are some of my observations as I watched the film:
- Without my knowledge or approval, apparently there is a new sub-genre of horror that is home invasion? Filmmakers are so lazy in horror nowadays that even the fucking killers have to come to you? Get out of the house and go to a summer camp like we did in the eighties for the love of Pete.
- DeM #1 – Not only does Erin seem to be the daughter of Rambo and MacGuyver when the shit hits the fan; she is also revealed to be raised by a wacko survivalist from the Australian outback. So throw Crocodile Dundee into the mix as well. If during a break in the onslaught she managed to whip up a bloomin’ onion to snack on, I would have not have been surprised.
- DeM#2 – The invaders have a cell phone blocker. Fuck you. Give me the old days when you didn’t know the shit was real until the lights went out. Which was done later for the hell of it I guess.
- Slow-motion running and idiotic stares foretell bad shit about to happen. When the annoying black sheep lovey-dovey daughter cliché tries to Usain Bolt out the door, she is met with nothing but strategically placed piano wire. Now, in the good ole’ days her head would have flown clean off like David Warner’s in The Omen. But no, she suffers a severe enough wound for her to die in the hallway grasping her throat. C’mon baby – everyone knows the only one who got away with slow motion running was Lee Majors.
- How long can you last with an arrow in your back? Seriously, I’d really like to know.
- After “Sheep Mask” kills one of the wives, he actually sits down and does the Michael Myers head tilt as he looks at her body. There hasn’t been a more blatant rip off of a signature move since Daniel Bryan stole his No-Lock from Chris Benoit’s Crippler Cross-Face. Am I right or wrong here people?
- The almost redeeming Night of the Living Dead ending. Erin should have been shot dead by the cop so she couldn’t have been able to warn Officer Nervous Nelly as he took the booby-trapped axe to the mush. Focus on the dead bodies and pull out with a crane shot. Not exactly homage to Touch of Evil but beggars can’t be choosers.
- The whole motivation of the plot can be boiled down to crippling student loan debt? It took me almost ten fucking years to get Winston-Salem, North Carolina out of my life but did I run around in a dumb-ass animal mask? No Sir.
- Erin apparently read the same book on booby traps that Nancy Thompson did when she had her fight with that test pattern-sweater guy on Elm Street.
Is It Actually Scary: I personally don’t find horror movies that constantly use stingers as scary. Everyone jumps when something loud suddenly happens when it’s quiet. Just because you tapped your girlfriend on the shoulder and she shit herself doesn’t make you John Carpenter.
Scariest Moment: When the entire family sat down to a loving dinner. Jesus that was brutal to watch. I can eat spaghetti drenched in sauce while watching Cannibal Holocaust – but that sent me running for the proverbial hills.
Most Disturbing Moment: When Crispin tried to explain that the reason this whole movie happened, besides his being in debt, was because he was a conscientious objector. We’ve come a long way from, “It was MOTHER who killed the girl, and not Norman.”
Dumbest Moment: When Netflix put this movie in my suggestions for you category.
How Much Gore: Not too much – just standard blood flow. It seems with theatrical releases of horror movies now, that they all look like the broadcast versions of themselves. We never see any knives go in, the swipes of hammers and machetes are cut at the second of impact; and most kills are off camera and we just hear the thwip of an arrow or the soft, mushy crunch of a kill. When Erin dispatched the King Douchebag brother with the bottom half of a blender, I considered it fan- service and insulting. Too late sweetie, this movie sucks and throwing in some Peter Jackson/Sam Rami-esque kill is infra-dig at this point.
Best Line: “I want you to fuck me on this bed next to your dead mom.” I’m not even going to swing at that one folks, however I will type it again. “I want you to fuck me on this bed next to your dead mom.”
Any Nudity: Zip. Whatever happened to slasher movie standards?
Overall: As with most horror movies recently released, I watched this one with the same face as William Hurt in A History of Violence. I just stare at them completely puzzled and ask the perfectly rational question, “How do you fuck that up?” I can only hope that the genre is currently in a valley, waiting for that one that brings it back to the peak. I could name the ones I think helped, but I don’t want this to turn into a YouTube comments section flame war. Suffice to say, this movie sucked like an airplane toilet and horror can do better.
Score: Mr. Blutarsky. 0.0 (out of 10)