Better Watch Out

Are they eyeing the presents or hiding from the home invader?

Lillian Shannon
November 24, 2020

The holiday season has just passed, and with that came the annual celebration of Christmas. Last year was a little less than conventional, so I say that this calls for some less than conventional movies, and what says that better than horror and Christmas combined? This article will be about one of my personal favourites, Better Watch Out, a Home Alone style Australian-American film. It was released in 2016 and was directed by Chris Peckover and written by Zack Kahn. Starring Australian actors Olivia DeJonge, Levi Miller, and Ed Oxenbould, it also has cameos from Stranger Things 3 actor Dacre Montgomery and The Emperor’s New Groove star Patrick Warburton. It received a rating of 89% on Rotten Tomatoes, an average rating of 6.5/10 on IMDB, and the box office grossed around 176,288 USD. 

This film received a lot of positive feedback from viewers with few negative reviews. Some of the more negative reviews described it as distasteful or crude due to the few gory scenes and the lewd humour and references, but this is outweighed by the number of people who enjoyed this horrific, festive movie. 

Before moving out of state, 17-year-old babysitter Ashley agrees to watch her client’s child, 12-year-old Luke, one last time. Luke decides that the holiday season has given him the courage to finally make his move on Ashley and confess his love for her before she moves away forever. When it appears as though the house is being broken into, many twists and turns occur before one final bizarre ending. 

The events in this movie are so unpredictable that it may seem as if it tried to do too many things, but I felt that it was done very well and did not seem too crowded. I have to give a round of applause to Luke’s actor, Levi Miller, for doing an amazing job at making his character seem so sweet and charming at the beginning but eventually growing into a deceitful monster who you just want to slap across the face. The scenery, the costumes, and the lighting make it feel like a traditional Christmas movie with the storyline of your standard horror movie. Overall, I give this movie an 8 out of 10. It was fun to watch and left me wondering what was going to happen next the entire time I was watching. To know more about the film, I recommend watching Dead Meat’s Kill Count on YouTube which looks behind the scenes with the actors and director.

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