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The Babysitter: A Breezy Horror Comedy That Knows What It Is

March 8, 2018

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The thing I appreciate most about The Babysitter is you know the tone and vibe almost immediately. It knows exactly what it is (shallow) and delivers a lot of pop culture references, blood, and jokes that are in no way subtle (It’s basically the movie version of somebody revving their car for 90 minutes). Director McG (Charlies’ Angels, This Means War, Chuck) has done enough brightly colored romps to know they need to be breezy, fun and smart about how dumb they are. Initially, I was surprised at its 75% Tomatometer score but after watching I can totally see why the brisk 85-minute movie would get favorable reviews. It is a refreshing little thing that knows what it is and goes about its business in a fun and unpretentious manner.

The Babysitter focuses on a twelve-year-old kid named Cole (Judah Lewis) having to battle his beautiful babysitter and her crew of teenage demonic cultists after he catches them murdering a kid in his house. Cole initially thinks he hit the babysitter jackpot with his long-time babysitter Bee (Samara Weaving) because of her perfect looks and knowledge of all things science fiction. While she babysits the two talk about movies, eat pizza, swim in his pool (gratuitous bikini shot) and dance around the house listening to Foghat.

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Being that this is a horror comedy full of violent death and blood we soon learn that Bee isn’t perfect and she plans on drugging Cole, murdering a random teenager she invited over to the house (while Cole sleeps) and using their blood in a ritual. The problem is Cole didn’t drink the drugged shot of booze she gave him earlier in the night so he calls the cops after the first murder and things go crazy from there, as Bee and her cultist friends try and fail to kill Cole. What follows feels like a combination of Home Alone and Scream that features impaled necks, stabbed heads, explosions and a breast with a bullet wound.

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The standout of the film is Samara Weaving who after Mayhem, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, and Ash vs. Evil Dead has proven herself to be a game performer who brings something interesting to each role. She always has chemistry with the other actors and her various roles have proven she can be good in any genre. Weaving has a lot of fun here and I like her Eva Green/Margot Robbie vide. The rest of the cast seems to be having blast and I enjoyed the cultists’ various interactions with Cole and you can tell they enjoyed spouting cheeky dialogue and playing vapid bad guys who die violently.

The Babysitter is a fun and shallow little horror comedy that was made to entertain and has no intention of rising above its trashy roots. There is something refreshing about watching a movie that knows what it is and despite its clunkiness, it makes for a solid background watch that is fun if you let it.

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