Written by J. Weagle
The Pack Is Back.
There’s no doubt that there was a copious amount of hype surrounding Adam Wingard’s home invasion film You’re Next. What’s most exciting is that the film manages to live up to most of it, and makes for one of the most entertaining films that genre has to offer and is a nice shot of electricity to a sometimes stale premise.
The setup is simple as the film follows the Aussie sweetheart Sharni and her hipster professor boyfriend to his childhood home, where his entire family is gathering for a wedding anniversary. It doesn’t take long however for an argument to erupt (like most family get togethers) and for one of the family members to receive an arrow in the eyeball. A group of invaders begin terrorizing the family with arrows, traps and whatever else they can find. Yes, You’re Next does not hold back, almost immediately jumping directly into swells of gruesome and often hilarious violence.
The middle portion of the film plays out much like you’d expect with members of the family making terrible decisions and being picked off by a group of killers wearing animal masks. These moments play out well enough and offer just the right amount of humour to keep things interesting, though the idiotic characters make it hard to do anything else but laugh.
The film was written by Simon Barrett who is no stranger to telling low budget horror stories that can blur the line between genres. Sometimes however the tone can shift a little too drastically in one direction or the other, being either too grim or too funny when perhaps a balance somewhere in between would have been better suited.
The acting is nothing to brag about, and some of the dialog sounds as if the actors are reading directly off the script, feeling forced and unintentionally funny. The effects and gags work well enough, but nothing besides the blender scene near the end really got a reaction out of me or felt innovative. The music on the other hand is a perfect mix of newage nerve crunching synth with a mixture of 1980’s thrown in for good measure becoming one of my favourite things about the movie.
The ending offers a nice little twist that becomes the crutch in which the entire film relies on, and thankfully it’s a satisfying one if not a tad bit predictable. The last half of the film is where the real humour is, playing on the tropes of the genre and mocking them not unlike the 1990’s iconic slasher Scream.
The final moments made me legit laugh and the final shot of the film feels as though it was thought up by Eli Roth in it’s irony and out of nowhere type of comedy. You’re Next is a fun movie and a refreshing take on the genre that is becoming extremely oversaturated but it’s in no way a perfect. It’s real issues come in the form of believability and rather than walk that fine line it topples over into ridiculousness perhaps a little too often. With that being said, it lives up to the hype and continues to prove Wingard is one of the most promising directors working in horror today.