Please note this post discussion is a post discussion, therefore it’s full of spoilers it discloses information about the ENTIRE film (yes including the ending) and these following movies,..The Taking of Debroah Logan (2014) , The Happening (2008),
So if you’ve not seen them it’s probably better not to read on..
While isn’t one of the best found footage movies to date. It is definitely entertaining, coming from a director who has had numerous cinema failures in the last few years; M Night has managed to pull back some credibility with this different stance on the found footage genre.
The movie doesn’t commit too many found footage movies sins, please see my list of what to and what not to expect in any found footage movies here. It does manage to create right atmosphere and has many plausible seems wear cameras could be used.
Well he has managed to make a good movie he hasn’t made a brilliant movie but I have to give me credit for not only working outside of his normal comfort zone by making a found footage movie and working with two very young actors but at the same time it has to be noted that these are the cheapest movies to make at the moment, so was this a money saving exercise in order.
Generally you find with M Night movies there is a very clear beginning middle and end which doesn’t leave much room for prequel sequel everything is quiet study as standalone movie.
While most of the movie was quite interesting I did find that some of the scares did get quite repetitive, fair enough the children had to spend a whole week with grandparents but there was a lot of similar sundowning instances that seemed a little overkill.
When it comes to plot holes that does seem to be a couple of questionable scenes and issues, the first being that be elderly couple who were pretending to be there a children’s grandparents, they somehow always manage to be at the house whenever somebody turned up to visit the original couple. Another curious factor that isn’t really a plot hole but would have changed the whole course of the movie is that the mother; even though she left a teenager, had decided to send her children so far to visit my grandparents without any reference for photographs of who her parents were or what they look like, I realise that if this was done then there wouldn’t have a movie but there was a chance that this could have been rectified somehow. Now I come to think about it, why was no one looking for the crazies anyway? A couple of fairly dangerous psycho’s escape from a hospital and fall off the radar? Seriously?
There’s an interestingly realistic approach to the depiction of mental health in this movie while both accurate and detailed M night manages to show a slightly different side to mental health than tha average Hollywood movies usually extend to. Without really knowing what the actual diagnosis is it’s hard to narrow down what the symptoms should have been like, but it seems that they had multiple issues between them on the flip side it does seem that the film almost demonises mental health sufferers to certain extent showing that they are violent and scheming . Obviously it doesn’t go to the extent that all mental health sufferers are capable of doing these things but it does add to a list of characters who once they are determine to have a mental issue instantly are assumed to be criminals. But you can’t forget that even while they were quite batshit crazy the couple did try their best to make sure that the children had very good weekend with their grandparents, so maybe they were all that bad after all?
So much of this movie is totally circumstantial if mother had being a decent person and disclosed more information about her parents with her children or has gone with them to make amends, or if the children were older and have more awareness of the world around them they might have twigged on quicker and if more people in the community worried about an elderly couple who were the pillar of the community and have gone missing then none of this would have happened.
The film starts with the mother making a confession detailing why she left her parents’ home as a teenager but without giving any information about an “incident” that kicked it all off. The children, spend most of the movie talking to the parents trying to find out exactly what has happened because their mother didn’t disclose information, while the children have gone through one of the most traumatic experiences of their lives just because their mother wouldn’t tell them the truth she did eventually man up at the end of the movie and did disclose what seems to be quite a minor offence but at least two children did get some closure but they had to go to hell to get it just because their mothers a bit of a dick.
It’s easy to dismiss and look down on the mother’s actions and behaviour but it needs to be made clear that she did leave her parents care while she was a teenager decided to get married and raise a family, in a way; she did look out for her children but she was more of a friend and a parent to them. Lots of people are probably wondering who chucks their kids out with (practically a couple of) strangers and skips town on a cruise with new hairy lover boy!? She did keep in touch through Skype, it’s better than nothing right? She was definitely was there for them at the end of the movie when they needed her the most. But overall she did make some massive mistakes, this is coming from a woman who left her parents care at a young age and obviously after the fight that occurred, had very little respect for them as most young teenagers do, anyway so she doesn’t really know what it’s like to be a good parent.
There are certain scenes in the movie that seemed so obviously lined up, for example when the kids placed the camera in the living room to capture what was going on outside their bedroom door after curfew, as soon as the filming starts of the dark room it’s SOOOOO obvious that someone was going to come in and do something creepy. Grandma comes into the dark room and then disappears and there was a groan from the audience cos we knew she was gonna pop up somewhere, acting like a demon.. she’s mad no demonic?!