"You're Next" fails to impress
Published: Monday, August 26, 2013
Updated: Monday, August 26, 2013 22:08
“You’re Next” has been hyped up as a big horror movie event in similar fashion to the remake of “Evil Dead.” I did not like “Evil Dead” and “You’re Next” may actually be worse. Similar to “Evil Dead,” the film is nothing more than another horror movie that delivers creative and gory sequences but beyond that has no substance or redeeming qualities.
It gets off to an interesting start with characters beginning to develop but then it just stops. Some characters are developed well while others are just archetypes and clichés we are left with for the entire movie. I suppose horror films do not need too much more besides the plot, and their twists are all based off of the motivations of their characters which in the end do not really add up to much.
I will not spoil the film, but once the audience is revealed the true nature of what is actually going on, it becomes one giant plot hole. It is like an M. Night Shamylan movie: the twist may seem believable while watching, but the moment you leave the theater, you will start to think about what just happened and realize it does not even begin to seem plausible. It might even happen before you leave if you are like me.
The film is not really a horror movie. It begins and progresses like a typical slasher, but once the action really starts, it becomes a violent action thriller. Unfortunately for the bad guys, one of their dinner guests has had some extensive fighting training and can turn into John Rambo on command. Rather than play out as a thriller, the film is just scene after scene of violent deaths with little suspense as we discover after the first fight that there is no way our female Schwarzenegger heroine can be beat. Because she is a woman I think we are supposed to believe this is a horror movie, but if we had easily re-written the part for a man and put Dwayne Johnson or Vin Diesel in the role, the only difference is that we would have seen it coming. Yet, the amount of criticism and audience praise this film and “Evil Dead” both received despite being ridiculous, gory messes lacking any sort of excitement or terror leads me to believe that maybe people want to see movies that are just filled with nothing but creative and gory deaths.
The title is ridiculous. I am trying very hard not to spoil the movie so I will say as little as possible. This is not “The Purge” or “The Strangers.” This home invasion is somewhat random. You will not leave the theater terrified by the animal-masked men entering your home even if the trailer did a good job of making you think so. Once you realize what is going on in the film it is clear that this is a very specific home invasion. So you are not next and I am not next. Nobody is next. Once the film ends, it is done. There is no realism or thrills in the film. Nobody will leave it wondering if they will have nightmares. “The Strangers” may not have been a very good movie, but it sure made you afraid of home invasions. “You’re Next” does not even accomplish that. But I suppose the film’s silly holes, twists and ending all do us the favor of ensuring there cannot possibly be a sequel with an even dumber name like “You’re All Next” or “They’re Next” or something along those lines. At least there is that.