Support Us!
$2
$3
$5
Powered by
Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!

SEE THE NEWEST CONTENT BELOW!

SEE THE NEWEST CONTENT BELOW!

Thursday, June 18, 2020

[Review] ‘You Should Have Left’ Is a Psychological Thriller Without Thrills

Idyllic, remote homes turned nightmarish prisons are a dime a dozen in horror. Many characters set off on a promising retreat only to find their bargain rental hides serious skeletons in the closet, from demonic entities to vengeful ghosts and beyond. The latest by Blumhouse Productions turns this setup into a psychological thriller, based on Daniel Kehlmann’s novella. Despite the roster of talent involved, however, it forgot to include the thrills.

Adapted for the screen and directed by David Koepp (Stir of Echoes, Secret Window), You Should Have Left stars Kevin Bacon as Theo, a middle-aged man suffering writer’s block and severe insecurities in his marriage. His wife, Susanna (Amanda Seyfried), is a much younger, successful actress harboring secretive behavior that further exacerbates Theo’s jealousy. The pressures within both his career and marriage prompt the couple to whisk themselves and their six-year-old daughter Ella (Avery Essex) away to a vacation home in the Welsh countryside, found online. All the tell-tale signs that they’ve picked the wrong vacation spot pop up right away. Time passes oddly, shadows move where they shouldn’t, and the few locals encountered are hostile. The question You Should Have Left wants you to ask is whether this is all in Theo’s splintering mind or not.

As Bacon already demonstrated in Stir of Echoes, his natural charisma lends well to ambiguity; that he can toggle back and forth so easily between the charming protagonist and sleazy villain extends beyond the lackluster script in making Theo’s mental state questionable. He has a dark past before his current marriage, and his jealousy is evident, but he also plays the doting husband and father with tender plausibility. That’s a good thing, considering Susanna is rendered more plot device than an actual character. Seyfried isn’t given much to work with beyond concerned wife with secrets, and she plays things so close to the chest that there’s no rooting interest to this core relationship.

Koepp’s screenplay gets sloppy with exposition, too. Critical information is delivered in such a clunky, unnatural way that it often comes across as another half-baked idea to muddy the waters of what’s happening. In one early scene, Susanna decides a random walk in the woods would be the perfect time to tell her young daughter about one of daddy’s darkest moments, something far too mature to relay so haphazardly to a six-year-old. It’s the precise type of jarring, infodump moment that doesn’t just tease foreshadowing; it bludgeons it to death with a sledgehammer. Expect this type of infodump to pop up again with late-game narrative shifts, and for some of the earlier narrative threads to get relegated to the sidelines permanently.

Some of this might be more easily forgiven if You Should Have Left wasn’t so bland. The cinematography is lovely, and the production design is excellent; the sleek, modern house is unsettling in its labyrinthine layout. Or could have been, anyway. The visual elements used to relay Theo’s dissolving sense of reality feel cliché, but more importantly, it all lacks energy. For what’s transpiring, these characters are far too calm. When the mystery finally shows its hand, it comes with a mild shrug of acceptance. There are zero stakes involved, therefore zero tension and scares. There’s a very interesting idea buried deep at the heart of this film, one that threatens to liven things up and deliver genuine thrills, but it’s underutilized and comes too late into the fold.

It’s not a spoiler to say that the title acts as a warning message to the characters within the film; Theo and Susanna should have left at the earliest of red flags before leaving ceased to be an option. The title could act as a warning to the audience, as well. 

You Should Have Left will be available on demand everywhere June 19, 2020.



source https://bloody-disgusting.com/reviews/3620566/review-left-psychological-thriller-without-thrills/

No comments:

Post a Comment


Support Us!
$2
$3
$5
Powered by
Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!



The Top 10 Streaming Scary Movies of Today (According to Netflix)

Given that Netflix really is the master of their own data, how many times a viewer streams The Ridiculous 6, or what films don't get watched all the way straight through, or how many times someone watches an episode of Bill Nye Saves the World, it was easy for them to come up with the list based on just one percentage: 70 percent.

Got any friends who might like this scary horror stuff? GO AHEAD AND SHARE, SHARE!


3 Frightening Clowns Not from the Underworld or Magical Hell


3 Viral Videos Proving Spiders Are Still Scary as Hell


Stephen King Adores These 22 Horror Films


3 Super Stories on 'Halloween' and Horror That'll Make You Want to Wear the Mask

xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#'