Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Children (2008)

Fear 5/5
Gore 4/5
Entertainment 5/5
Creepiness 5/5

I'm going to preface this review by saying that I am absolutely terrified by the prospect of having kids. I'm getting married in about 3 months and the soon to be missus wants to have a little ankle biter in about two years. Not only is the world a fucked up place right now, I just can't stand them. Yeah they're cute and what not but have you SEEN kids today? I want to dole out haymakers left and right. The way they treat their parents, their me first attitudes and sense of entitlement. Not too mention, they are each mini versions of you and me and have their own potential for proclivities as it relates to beng evil. Which brings us to this film. It is my worst nightmare times a thousand.

A family is getting together in the Enligsh countryside for their annual Jolly St. Fatass celebration. Complete with their band of rugrats, they settle in to the cozy cabin-like home out in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by woods and snow. Its not long before a couple of kids start coughing and puking up some phlegmy stuff. The parents don't seem to pay any mind and despite the kids and their wildly erratic behavior, they just turn the other way until things go to 11 and they start getting increasingly more violent. And you know that shit is about to go down when you see them dish out CareBear stares:

So the kids start off their assault on their family members by sending their uncle down an embankment on a slead, coming to a stop when it runs into one of their Radio Flyers that has a pronged garden hoe affixed to it. His head splits open, he bleeds to death, while the kids stand around and continue to stare. From here on out, the kids get more and more vicious and nasty using the lure of their perceived innocence to reel in their family only to brutally trick, maim and murder them.

Throughout the film, you are left wondering what is it exactly thats infected these kids and made them go all haywire. Its never fully explained but there are a couple of interesting things that make you wonder. For one, one of the fathers works at a lab so maybe you think that he brought something home with him. Secondly, as the film nears the end, you see other kids in the woods, staring down a pair of family members who are trying to make their escape. So there is a thought that maybe it has something to do with the woods themselves. Lastly, different character flaws are revealed about each parent, from the uncle who wants to get into the knickers of his niece to the sisters that squabble and claim each other as being unfit mothers. You get the sense that maybe the kids are on some kind of fucked up mission to right the wrongs of their parents.

Even though nothing is ever explained, this film is edge of your seat, pulse racing madness. Its absolutely brilliant. And its also an incredibly terrifying movie watching experience altogether. Not only because of the creepy kid factor (cliched yes, but it works here to great effect), but also because of the brutal and mean spirited ways in which they off their family members. Fuck having kids, I'll stick with dogs.

Cortez the Killer

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Chris Hallock said...

Fuck yeah, I LOVE this one!

So much that it's like one of the only films from the past 5 - 6 years that I actually bought. I know it'll stand up to repeat viewing.

Sarah from Scare Sarah said...

This is so great. It really plays on your fears of children. They're supposed to be harmless, things to be looked after, that makes you vonerable. Scary stuff.

Matt-suzaka said...

I love the ambiguity of why the kids are crazy and also I really dig the conflict between the couples too, because it isn't over explained. Very natural interactions for the most part.

Some of the scenes with just the kids acting up alone were great in how chaotic everything would get, and still, the parents are so good at drowning out their children until they get out of control.

It actually says something about the film with how the parents are so wrapped up in themselves, that they barely even acknowledge the kids when they should be and they almost ask for something bad to happen due to ignoring the obvious signs. Happy you liked this one, it is a great film and one of my recent favs!

B-Movie Becky said...

Wow, look like you really enjoyed this one (aside from it creeping you out with your fear of children). I still have not seen it! I really want to though.

Congrats on the upcoming wedding!

Complaint Dept said...

Cortez, it's not too late to have that particular biological faucet shut off. I had it done - it wasn't too bad aside from some minor swelling and some gnarly looking bruises. There are 6 billion people on the Earth. SIX BILLION dude. No need for more. In fact, we need less. More war now.

PS - sorry I've been lagging on reviews. I'm busy as shit.

Cortez The Killer said...

@Chris, most definitely. I have no doubt it will stand up to repeat viewings.

@Sarah, it plays on your fears in the WORST way. Sweet jesus I don't see how the child actors weren't fucked in the head after filming.

@Matt, definitely loved the different angles it played as well. So brilliant. Not every movie works without some sort of resolution but this one certainly did. And the kids really did make the film as they should.

@Becky, you need to see this ASAP. I know its right up your alley. And many thanks on the congrats!

@Complaint Dept., my dick just cringed in terror. Sorry homie, but I don't think I will win that battle. And no worries duder, got your back like Pat Sajak!

the jaded viewer said...

Sure there's a chance your kid could be the next anti christ but there is also a good chance he/she could the next tiger woods or paris hilton...hmm those were not good examples :-(

The Film Connoisseur said...

This movie sounds like Cronenbergs The Brood, or Wicked Little Things. Evil little kids killing. I never thought this one would be cool, I would probably just pass it up at the video store, but your review makes it sound watchable.

Cortez The Killer said...

@jaded, um yeah. Not good but hilarious. What's the saying, you hate everyone's kids but your own? That could be the case but I am still terrified nonetheless.

@TFC, the film DEFINITELY has a Cronenbergs The Brood feel to it. Have not seen Wicked Little Things yet but I think Complaint Dept. has. Its more than watchable, es muy excelente!!

Chet Of The Undead said...

Lastly, different character flaws are revealed about each parent, from the uncle who wants to get into the knickers of his niece

What would a good creepy flick be without its own pet lecherous Uncle!! :P

Now for some pie!

The Film Connoisseur said...

Wicked Little Things is just okay. Its got way to many plot holes in it...didnt love it.

Chris Regan said...

Don't have much to add but I loved this film too! Nice to know I'm not the only one.

Carl (ILHM) said...

I really liked this one as well, but unfortunately it was overhyped for me and it didnt have as huge an effect on my first viewing. Been meaning to give it a second go. I still prefer WHO CAN KILL A CHILD though as my all time fav killer kids flick!