Wednesday, May 31, 2023

The Boogeyman (2023) - Movie Review

The Movie: The Boogeyman

The Director: Rob Savage

The Cast: Sophie Thatcher, Chris Messina, Vivien Lyra Blair, Marin Ireland, Madison Hu, LisaGay Hamilton, David Dastmalchian

The Story: Adapted from a short story by Stephen King.

The Review:
Back in 2020, during the height of the pandemic, Rob Savage was somehow able to safely put together a Zoom perspective based horror movie called Host that became my favorite movie of that year. Now the director is back with a more mainstream studio effort that's an adaptation of a Stephen King short story and I have to say it is yet another strong effort. I'm not sure if this will mean anything in the long run although I really hope it does, but Savage slips in a super fun easter egg for fans of Host. It could be nothing but a one off but it could also open the door for something much bigger. If you know, you'll know.

As I mentioned, Host was a Zoom meeting perspective horror movie whereas The Boogeyman is a straight up narrative feature and I'll tell you right now it's one of the better horror movies I've seen in a while. This year is shaping up to be a good one for horror fans with Evil Dead Rise knocking it out of the park with a blood soaked gore fest and now this movie following it up just as strong with a truly dark and frightening tale. Right from the beginning Savage goes for a dark and foreboding mood that sets everything up nicely for the inevitable scare tactics.

If you don't know who Sophie Thatcher is then please go watch Prospect as soon as you can, it's a really great sci-fi indie film that she stars in alongside a pre-Mandalorian Pedro Pascal. The u and coming actress is pretty amazing in that film, her feature debut, and she is just as good in this movie also as she carries a lot of the heavy lifting, especially when it comes to the really scary stuff. On the other side of the sistely duo is another rising star in Vivien Lyra Blair who is probably most known for her turn as the iconic Leia Organa in the Obi Wan Kenobi limnited series. (Fun fact, Thatcher is also in the Star Wars universe with a role in the Boba Fett series.)

For any horror movie to be effective, it of course has to be scary. I mean, that's the point, right? So many films that claim to be part of the genre end up being sorely lacking in that area with maybe one or two cheap jump scares to justify its existence and it seems like it's becoming increasingly rare for a movie to be a truly scary experience like this one. Savage packs the movie with dark, creepy, scary moments from beginning to end and I never really felt like there was any unnecessary down time or overly long explanations of why everything was happening. The run time is just over 90 minutes which to me is a nice sweet spot for the genre. Get in, scare everyone, and get out.

The Verdict:
The Boogeyman honors the King of horror with a film filled with all the dark and creepy things and some truly legitimate scares that will have you jumping out of your seat. Director Rob Savage delivers once again and continues his ascension into the upper ranks of the genre's most promising filmmakers.

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