Josh Falcone – General Assignment Reporter
In the new horror film “You’re Next” is set during a family reunion getaway when the Davison family comes under a sadistic attack. The family is at their country home celebrating Ma and Pa Davison’s wedding anniversary. Unfortunately for the Davison’s, the family’s evening together is shattered when a masked gang crashes the dinner party with gory murder on their mind; but what they don’t know is someone at the table has the ability to survive and fight back.
The movie begins with a pre-credit sequence where an intruder dressed in all black while wearing an animal masks invades a home, murdering the inhabitants and then scrawling the film’s title in blood on a wall. At this point you kind of get what the movie’s got in store for you: Blood, scares, more blood, gruesome deaths, thrills, and more blood.
After the ‘modi operandi’ of the killers is introduced, we meet Crispian Davison and his lady-friend Erin who are on their way to the elder Davison’s country estate for said family reunion, celebration hybrid. Along with Crispian and his sweetheart Erin, the weekend includes Crispian’s siblings, Drake, Amy, and Felix, and their respective partners. Tension flies between the group over dinner when it is interrupted by an arrow flying through the window into one of the guests’ head.
What follows is a cat and mouse game that the filmmakers fill with all the old classic horror film clichés but they turn these overused techniques on their head. The film also includes some very creative and gruesome deaths as the animal masked killers kill off the houseguests. As stated before, the killers also do not take into account that someone who starts out as an unassuming character turns into a killing machine that levels the playing field with their skills and creativity. The film also includes some twists and while some will see them coming, most will not. The film also shifts genres mid-film and shifts back again, something I found enjoyable.
The film’s cast is filled with many indie actors and directors, friends of the film’s director Adam Wingard, safe for “Step Up 3D” star Sharni Vinson who plays Erin and Barbara Crampton who starred in the 1980’s classic “Re-Animator” who plays the matriarch of the Davidson clan, Aubrey. The film’s cast does a superb job in the film and plays their parts well.
Director Wingard brings a lightness of touch to the film that at times borders on parody, but whenever the film begins to feel like it is becoming a spoof, Wingard injects some suspense, tension and genuine scares to pull the film back on track.
The film’s score pays tribute to the classic horror films of John Carpenter, by using a heavy eighties synthesized soundtrack. The obscure 1977 Dwight Twilley Band song “Looking for the Magic” also plays a significant role in the film, and good luck getting it out of your head after seeing “You’re Next.”
I went into the film not really thinking I was going to like it, but do to the shift in the films tone, I enjoyed it thoroughly.
“You’re Next” is a really good slasher-black comedy hybrid that reinvents many of the old horror film clichés.
3 out of 4 owls!