Todd Burpo has a fulfilling career as a businessman, fire fighter and pastor in a caring small-town community. He also has a loving family in his wife Sonja and two children Colton and Cassie. Like any idyllic family life though, he has been struck by grief, the most recent being the heartbreaking news that Colton must undergo immediate major surgery after collapsing on the brink of death. Afterwards, Colton reveals to his parents a series of revelations enough to shock the world. He recounts how he saw himself in hospital and describes the separate rooms his parents were waiting in, he reveals how he met his stillborn second sister and also accurately describes the grandfather he never met. Todd is convinced Colton has experienced a slice of the afterlife, but it's not enough to convince the sceptical town who are not ready to accept such a seemingly impossible truth.
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Wildly over-praised by audiences desperate for a scary horror movie, this film has little more than the germ of a solid idea followed by a series of predictable cliches. It's a clever twist on the violent home-invasion scenario, fraught with family tensions and shifty characters. But the story develops without much sense of direction, and all of the scary bits are added in post-production through jolting editing and a freak-out sound mix.
It centres on a family gathering at a palatial summer home for the 35th anniversary of Paul and Aubrey (Moran and Crampton). All of their kids are here: Crispian (Bowen) is nervous about bringing his girlfriend (Vinson) to meet everyone, and his three siblings Felix, Aimee and Drake (Tucci, Swanberg and Seimetz) have also arrived with their respective partners (Glenn, Myers and West). The usual arguments are re-ignited at their first meal together, but they're quickly interrupted by a bigger problem: someone shoots an arrow through a window and begins picking them off one by one. As they are forced to work together, Erin rises to the challenge, leading the defence against the invaders.
The set-up is fairly simplistic, as the family members all have a sense of dread about this gathering, knowing that it's going to be tense. Then the fiendishly efficient attackers arrive, dressed like ninjas with animal masks, well-armed with knives, machetes, hatchets and cross-bows, plus booby traps to make the house itself a killing machine. None of this is very plausible, frankly. The actors aren't quite up to the challenge of making us believe the inter-relationships, and the plot is deeply contrived. The filmmakers seem determined to make a film without a single gun, which is intriguing until people pick up a tiny steak-knife to defend themselves when the handy baseball bat would be a lot more effective.
Continue reading: You're Next Review
When the Davisons decide to embark on a vacation to a remote getaway house with their family and friends to celebrate a wedding anniversary, everything seems so perfect, peaceful and undisturbed. However, when a crossbow arrow comes flying through the window killing one of the guests, they realise that their blissful weekend has turned into a deadly nightmare when it is revealed that three axe-toting murderers in animal masks have been stalking them for days, waiting for the right moment to butcher them one by one. What they hadn't banked on was that they would become the ones watching their backs when the most unlikely guest of all, Erin, starts hunting them down.
Continue: You're Next Trailer
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