Horror Club: Better Watch Out
With the holidays right around the corner, there's never been a better time to watch holiday horror movies. The Krampus trend has been on the rise the past few years, and they are awesome and all, but this week at Soulless, we decided to take a look at Better Watch Out. The film was written by Zack Kahn and Chris Peckover, and Peckover was also responsible for directing it. It has begun debuting worldwide the past few months; the US and Australia got it back in October, and just days ago, it began hitting the United Kingdom. This is definitely a movie for those who are fans of crazy kid killers; Better Watch Out has one of the best ones yet!
It's the holidays, and 17 year old Ashley (played by Olivia DeJonge) is hired by a middle age couple to babysit their 12 year old son, Luke Lerner (played by Levi Miller). Luke begins acting strange when he begins making passes at Ashley, hoping to seduce her and have her love him the way that he loves her. Ashley quickly shuts down Luke's poor attempt at seducing the babysitter, which continues to frustrate him each time he continues to try. Luke's best friend Garrett (Ed Oxenbould) tries to assist as Luke's wingman, trying to scare the two so that Luke can step up and take charge of the situation, which in turn is supposed to turn Ashley on. When she releases that the "killer" in the house is Garrett and she figures out the plan the boys had in mind, she gets understandably pissed and tries to leave. Ashley gets knocked unconscious by Luke, and when she awakens, she is tied to a chair and left to the mercy of the insane, self entitled brat that is Luke Lerner. From there, things go from pathetic to absolutely nuts. Luke gets more and more violent, and even begins slightly torturing Ashley a bit. As boys begin to arrive at the household, jealous Luke gets fucking crazy and begins doing some crazy kid psychopath stuff.
So I'll be straight up with you; Better Watch Out has pretty much nothing to do with the holidays, besides the fact that it takes place during the holidays. So if you're looking for a movie that somehow incorporates the season cleverly, move along - this movie isn't the one for you. But if you are a fan of films with bat-shit insane kids, Better Watch Out is going to be one you don't want to miss. Luke Lerner is absolutely nuts - he seems pretty innocent and harmless at first. But once his advances get shut down by the babysitter, he gets ugly. It's sad, you can tell he genuinely does have feelings for Ashley, and his jealously shows its ugly head anytime Garrett even gets too close to her. But his obsession with her becomes deadly as he begins to grow heartless and downright violent with Ashley's boyfriend and ex-boyfriend. I REALLY don't want to give too many details about the actual violence and deaths in the film, but let me tell you this: one of them is absolutely fucking brilliant and is worth watching the whole movie just to see. When the kids refer to the act, I damn near lost my shit; it's horror movie genius and was totally awesome. The movie has some pretty notable parts to it that make it a movie totally worth your time. It may not be anything revolutionary or something you haven't seen before (like I said, it's a pretty standard crazy child film) but it's incredibly well done, it's entertaining and the actors are all pretty great. You will quickly go from "aw Luke is such an innocent, cute kid" to "this dude belongs in a fucking mental institution" rather quickly.
Better Watch Out turned out to be a lot better than I had thought it would be, and I was pleasantly surprised with just how crazy and dark it got. The kids are all great, the deaths are all pretty sick (although this was not a gory film at all - the aftermath of the deaths were all pretty PG). I think if you're in the mood for a horror film, and it's right around the holidays, Better Watch Out would be a pretty excellent choice. Don't expect anything you probably haven't seen before, but definitely don't expect any lame or boring scenes - the movie kept my attention all the way through. The movie's worth your time if you're just a fan of horror looking for something fresh to watch, and believe me, you're going to want to punch little Luke by the end of the film!