When a gang of masked, ax-wielding murderers descend upon the Davison family reunion, the hapless victims seem trapped... until an unlikely guest of the family proves to be the most talented killer of all.
Starring: Sharni Vinson, Joe Swanberg, AJ Bowen, Nicholas Tucci, Wendy Glenn, Rob Moran, and Barbara Crampton
Director: Adam Wingard
Writer: Simon Barrett
"You're Next" is next in a growing line of home invasion themed horror movies. It starts off with the typical token death of some unimportant characters. They waste little time making use of the phrase 'You're Next,' as it’s written on a sliding glass window. The scene ends with the splattering of some pretty fake looking blood leading me to believe this was going to be a long movie.
From there the audience is introduced to the wealthy Davison family, as they begin to show up to their vacation house little by little. Apparently it has been a while since Paul (Rob Moran) and Aubrey (Barbara Crampton) have had their entire family together under one roof. Their three sons and daughter each bring their significant other with them increasing the eventual body count. Just as the introduction begins to weight on the audience the fun begins.
A fox, tiger, and lamb attack the family. Wait, when did this become a nature film, and what’s so scary about a lamb? All right, a fox, tiger, and lamb don’t actually attack them. Those are the faces of the masks used by the "ax-wielding murderers," which turn out to be a little more intimating than originally thought (including the lamb). These murderers are pretty good at what they do, and come prepared to make quick work of this poor unsuspecting group.
As these murderers begin to pick off the family members, and their guests, horror fans are left wondering just how is this going to turn out any different then any other home invasion horror movie. Most of the time the victims panic, and anyone who survives basically does so out of luck. Well, not this time. The difference is that one-person steps forward, and actually takes the fight right at the murderers.
Erin (Sharni Vinson), one of the son’s girlfriends, is that person. At first it might seem a little ridiculous that she’s actually fighting back, but it doesn’t take long before the audience buys right into what she’s doing. What sets Erin apart from other characters that have survived in this kind of movie is that she doesn’t rely on luck. She knows exactly what she needs to do in order to “Survive the Night.”
Yes, that brings me to a quick look at why “You’re Next” accomplishes everything audiences wanted to see in the other big home invasion movie of 2013, “The Purge.” “The Purge” has a good story behind it, but it never gets as bloody and brutal as the story sets it up to be. Also, it doesn’t quite establish a character to really root for. “You’re Next” easily accomplishes both of these things. There is plenty of blood spilt both from the helpless family and friends, and the murderers. And Erin, well she just might be one of the easiest characters to root for in a long time.
Erin completely takes over the movie once she begins to fight back against the masked men. The audience gets right behind her, and the movie becomes extremely entertaining to watch. They might even go a little over board with the entertainment, as they decide to play some almost ridiculous music during the final moments of the movie. Besides some questionable acting to start off with, it’s truly my only complaint about how this movie turns out.
There are some twist, and turns in the story. Some aren’t too hard to figure out if the audience has ever seen this type of movie before. After the movie is over, the audience can go back, and see the clues to why this took place. It really becomes more of a matter of when are the twists going to be revealed then not expecting them. To add to the fun, they set up for a particular moment to happen, and keep the audience on the edge of their seat waiting for it.
“You’re Next” might get off to a suspect start, but it surprisingly becomes an absolute pleasure to watch. Sharni Vinson puts on a terrific performance, as she quickly gets the audience on Erin’s side. She effortlessly makes her character seem so sweet and innocent, and then turns her into a killing machine. There are plenty of victims suffering some brutal, and bloody deaths. While the twists might not be hard to figure out, they in no way hurt the story. If you liked “The Purge,” or thought it needed to be upgraded, than you should find “Your Next” even more to your liking. With that, I give this movie 3.5 pools of blood.