I can’t say I was expecting much from The Babysitter, but in a bid to make the most of my Netflix subscription, I thought I would give it a whirl.
The trailer didn’t do much to convince me that a good time could be had from this horror comedy, but its slender 85 minute running time sealed the deal. Young Cole (Judah Lewis) is only too happy to have his babysitter, Bee (Samara Weaving), look after him while his parents are away. Harbouring a crush on his babysitter, Cole stays up past his bedtime and sneaks out of his room when he hears raised voices downstairs.
At this point, we’re ten minutes in, and a barrage of pop culture references and the main characters swiftly introduced, I was convinced my gut feeling was right. However, things took a turn with an unexpectedly gruesome gag. From this point on the John Hughes style coming of age story mixes with outlandish death scenes with a knowing sense of humour. It’s not by any stretch a great film, but if you love horror movies and like them with a dash of silliness, the you could do far worse than The Babysitter.
Perhaps the most surprising thing about The Babysitter is that it comes to us from director McG. Whenever you see McG’s name on a film or TV show, it can often create a false sense of disappointment. While he has aided in developing great TV shows like Supernatural and Chuck, his feature films include Terminator Salvation, two Charlie’s Angels, This Means War, 3 Days To Kill, and more unforgivably a Smash Mouth music video and The Offspring’s Pretty Fly (for a White Guy). I’m not saying McG is a bad filmmaker; I’m merely saying that every film I’ve seen of his has been mostly bad. Well, until now, as The Babysitter is by far the most watchable motion picture McG has directed to date.
If you haven’t watched the trailer for The Babysitter, do yourself a favour and avoid it, as not only does it spoil a fair amount of the movie it doesn’t really sell the premise all that well.
★★★ While the premise is hardly original, The Babysitter manages a few gory surprises and some solid laughs. The Babysitter’s Club would not approve.