You're Next (Lionsgate, 2013)
If The Conjuring is the 21st century reincarnation of the classic Horror movie, then You're Next is the 21st century equivalent to the early '80s B-movie slasher flick. You know the ones...the multitude of nameless, tasteless generic splatter films that were cranked out on shoestring budgets after Friday the 13th took off. The plot is so thin and the ending is telegraphed so far in advance that by a quarter of the way in you have the entire thing figured out and you are just counting dead bodies and running down the clock.
The premise had a lot of potential. A well off family celebrates their parents' 35th wedding anniversary in their upscale cottage in a remote rural area. While the couple and their four adult children (plus their significant others) are having dinner, one of them spots something outside and gets up to look out the window and gets shot with an arrow. All Hell breaks loose and the family is suddenly thrust into a captive situation. The whole “everyone split up and search the house”, the cell phones don't work, and other tired scenarios occur and the outcome is as unconvincing as it is predictable. I won't give away the “plot twist” since it is the only thing that the film has going for it. Suffice it to say, I have seen episodes of Scooby Doo with more of a twist.
The herky-jerky camera work early on serves only to distract you from the wafer thin plot. The director could have made better use of atmosphere like he did in the first few moments of the film when you see the parents driving to their cottage. You're Next could have been really good; instead it was merely okay. The Strangers was a much more disturbing film with a similar premise. This film is yet another cautionary tale to stay away from rural areas. I will take my chances with gang bangers and carjackings in Detroit over nutjob rural folks, thank you very much.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 2.5 out of 5.