— Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance from The Shining, 1980
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August 16, 2013
Review: You’re Next is intentionally bad but reluctantly entertaining
— Posted by Ryan
Synopsis: When the Davison family comes under attack during their wedding anniversary getaway, the gang of mysterious killers soon learns that one of victims harbors a secret talent for fighting back.
The horror genre is probably the most negatively regarded genre in terms of quality films. Many of them follow a stereotypical sequence of events that make the movie predictable from beginning to end. You’re Next is one of those films and follows that predictable, systematic approach in excess. While this film has many similarities of your typical horror film, there is something else that makes this film more than meets the eye.
With the early buzz surrounding the film, I was expecting something totally different than what the film turned out to be. The film does not invoke some sort of thought-provoking epiphany, it doesn’t even scare for the most part. What distinguishes this film from other horror films is its simplicity and the fact that it is self-aware. At first it seems like the film is going to be absolutely horrible but if you accept the fact that this film is created with the purpose of poking fun at its predictability, then it’s easier to see what this film is and how to enjoy it.
The plot is simple and predictable from the start. Every scene can be determined in an adequate amount of time before it begins. With the simplicity of the plot, comes the simplicity of the characters, their dialogue, the setting, and even the acting. It’s near impossible to make any real connections because of how bad every element of this film is. Everything about this it is bad from a critic’s point of view but to many viewers, this film could easily be considered horribly good.
From all the elements that are bad on paper, the potential for a horror cult classic emerges. The film becomes a laughable stereotype that allows you to refrain from deconstructing it element by element and instead let your mind wander and enjoy the show. The predictability builds anticipation for upcoming laughs. Rather than being abruptly frightened, you’re smiling waiting for the next “surprise” or brutally ridiculous kill. The best thing about the kills and brutality is that it comes from both the hero and the villains which makes the kills even more jovial since they are morally justified. So no matter which side you root for, you’re going to have some sort of satisfaction.
I can’t in good faith call this a good film but I can say it was enjoyable at a mindless level. With so many elements being so intentionally poor, it makes the film seem more like a contest of how worse it can get. I would compare the approach to a film like 2010’s Piranha without the outright attempt at being a comedy. If you are a fan of campy horror films then I would say this would be worth seeing. I don’t know if it’s necessarily worth seeing in the theater, but it’s definitely a fun ride that you can enjoy with friends.
This post was written by :
First and foremost, Ryan Brown is a fan. He has been an avid fan of both the theater and cinema since an early age and his passion for both has been continually growing ever since. When dissecting a film, he focuses on all elements of film-making including some fan/cult factors. He believes that character development is the foundation of a good film and usually starts his analysis of a film from there moving forward. His writing style may be influenced by his background of narrative and argumentative studies in the subject, but he tends to enjoy a more conversational style to better interact with the readers, unlike some other pretentious and pompous writers.
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