I went in to this movie expecting less than stellar results. I expected this to be a formulaic supernatural horror movie with jump scares that aren't really scary and a dumb plot with bad acting. The movie was actually pleasantly surprising.
The acting was pretty convincing. I'm going to try not to spoil it for you, but some minor spoilers may accidentally be revealed. Lauren Cohan was really good for a horror movie. She portrayed being scared well, as did she being sympathetic. Rupert Evans served as comedic relief, and was pretty good in his role too.
The first three quarters of the film play out like a rather formulaic supernatural horror film, with all of the "Don't go in there!" and "Are you kidding me?!? That's so stupid!" moments, however, with the big twist comes a big turn. The clichés are gone, the stupidity gone, and the suspense heightens. In fact, most of the film is not reliant on the gore or the jump scares that most modern horror films base themselves on, but instead uses eerie score, production design, and camerawork to get its audience freaked out.
There were some really interesting shots that are implied to be from the POV of the doll, which I thought to be a really cool move, heightening tension— the intended goal of the film. The ending is great, in my opinion, and totally unexpected, but the beginning is so subpar that it was often laughable.
With a relatively short runtime, The Boy is definitely better than most standard horror fare of the time. It's a fun way to spend a night, even if just to laugh at the audience around you wildly overreact to the scares. It's actually hard for me to assign a rating to this because it felt like two different films in one.
Big Tuna's Rating: B
How Did I Watch It?: In theaters.
Had I Seen It Before?: No.
Would I Watch It Again?: Maybe.
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I look at films as if through old red and blue 3D glasses— one lens is as art, one lens is as entertainment.
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