Film Review by Kam Williams
Masked Maniacs Wreak Havoc at Family Reunion in Harrowing Horror Flick
Paul Davison (Rob Moran) recently retired after receiving a generous golden parachute from KPG, the defense contractor with which he’d enjoyed a long career as an executive. Hoping to spend their golden years in the country, he and his wife Aubrey (Barbara Crampton) purchased a sprawling Tudor mansion in need of a little TLC.
The couple moves into the mammoth fixer-upper on their 35th anniversary with plans to celebrate by hosting a family reunion that very same weekend. Their arriving guests include son Crispian (AJ Bowen) and his girlfriend Erin (Sharni Vinson); son Drake (Joe Swanberg) and his wife Kelly (Margaret Laney); son Felix (Nicholas Tucci) and his girlfriend Zee (Wendy Glenn); and daughter Aimee (Amy Seimetz) and boyfriend Tariq (Ti West).
But the revelers at the rural retreat are initially blissfully unaware that their only neighbors (Kate Lyn Sheil and Larry Fessenden) for miles around have just been murdered in a brutal home invasion by an ax-wielding maniac. This means Erin is in for the shock of her life when Mrs. Davison innocently asks her to run next-door to borrow some milk. What she finds is the aftermath of the slaughter, and the words “You’re Next” written in blood on a sliding glass door.
Then, as night falls, the Davisons, find their phones inoperable as they come under attack by a masked madman armed with a crossbow. They immediately begin to barricade the premises and to take precautionary measures while trying to figure out who would want them dead and why.
Thus unfolds You’re Next, a high attrition-rate horror flick directed by wunderkind Adam Wingard (A Horrible Way to Die). The Mumblecore maven tapped a talented cast featuring several actors associated with the genre, including Joe Swanberg, Amy Seimetz and Lane Hughes.
This tautly-edited, harrowing adventure that kept this critic on the edge of my seat and constantly reminding myself that “It’s only a movie.” It even had me shrieking at the top of my lungs in reaction to a number of shocking developments, precisely as the best in fright fare ought to do.
Rather than risk spoiling a cleverly-concealed mindbender one iota, suffice to say that the summer of 2013 has been a great season for horror fare, from The Purge to The Conjuring to this spine-tingling scare fest not for the squeamish.
Excellent (4 stars)
Rated R for profanity, sexuality, nudity and graphic violence
Running time: 96 minutes
Distributor: Lionsgate Films
To see a trailer for You're Next, visit: http://lionsgatepublicity.com/theatrical/yourenext/