Wednesday, July 27, 2011
The Children Review
Imagine the scene, you take your family to your sisters for a Christmas party. The kids play like young children do, while the adults chat and drink. The kids succumb to a mysterious illness, leading to a life or death battle with your own children.
This is the premise of Tom Shankland's The Children, the rarity that is a modern British horror film. Preying on the fears of harming your own child, the film goes all out in exploring the concept. It's a ballsy idea that for the most part really works, thanks to the conviction of the writing and direction.
The first third of the film is a little slow moving with perhaps too much time taken setting up the characters, which would be fine if they weren't so nauseatingly upper middle class. It's pretty well set up and it's clear what's going to happen, you're just left waiting for it. When the shit hits the fan it's worth the wait, the film has some pretty nasty moments as well as an interesting psychological edge.
The most alarming thing about the film from my perspective, not being a parent, is that I found the scenes in the first third with the children running amok, screaming and crying far more frightening than when they were on their killing spree! That's probably just me though, based on looking after my two young nephews a few times, so don't let that put you off a refreshingly brave and nasty little film.