You’re Next – A Sloppy Slasher Film

September 12, 2013 10:34 am

The trailer for ‘You’re Next’ made this film look like an original and creative slasher film. If not a little inspired by the 2008 film ‘The Strangers’. The idea of your home being invaded by menacing individuals trying to cut you open with no apparent motive is pretty horrifying. One that is universally relative. However, ‘You’re Next’ does its absolute best to make this issue impossible to relate to, by giving us a selection of bland and unsympathetic characters, of which all of them are either one-dimensional and impossible to emphasise with. You just cannot help but wish they were slashed to bits.

you're next

Even a superb heroine can’t save this sloppy horror slasher.

The story is pretty formulaic. ‘You’re Next’  is about a family reunion gone wrong. It is centered around a wealthy American family who are staying at their vacation manor house and are all badly written stereotypes of affluent American society. The only characters worth following are Crispian (A J Bowen), Erin (Sharni Vinson), Felix (Nicholas Tucci) and Zee (Wendy Glenn). The rest are all just axe-fodder, spending the majority of the film screaming and crying whilst getting slashed to bits. Crispain is the middle-child and is an academic Professor who is visiting with his girlfriend and former student, Erin. Felix is the younger child and is different from his siblings in that he is a bit of a sleaze ball. Zee is his moody gothic girlfriend who doesn’t say a whole lot.

The problem with ‘You’re Next’ is that it strives to deliver a big twist at the end but ensures this doesn’t happen with sloppy writing throughout – both with the narrative and characters. Crispain and Felix are the main culprits. This isn’t so much a spoiler as it is painfully obvious. Felix is so suspiciously out of place that it is hard not to feel that he is in some way implicated with the film’s events. Crispian also disappears in the first twenty-minutes and doesn’t reappear until the end as he too plays a part in the big shock finale. His absence completely detracted from the ending and gave the game away as it is suspiciously apparent throughout.

The only thing to save ‘You’re Next’ was Sharni Vinson’s performance as Erin, the unexpected heroine. Vinson’s portrayal of a strong, confident and intelligent female role is something that is sadly not seen enough of in the horror/slasher genre. Rather than brute strength to take down the attackers, Erin is written as an intelligent and savvy character having grown up in a survivalist compound. Her odd childhood explains her extensive knowledge of weaponry and she uses a selection of booby-traps to tackle the attackers; making it like a twisted version of ‘Home Alone’. It’s refreshing to see a strong female lead once again, and it is something that should be more frequent throughout all cinema.

Despite Vinson’s performance, ‘You’re Next’ is an uninspired and unoriginal slasher that brings nothing new to the genre. Originally released onto the horror festival scene in 2011, it seems that this one was only brought back for re-release after the success of ‘The Purge’ of which the trailer tries so hard to emulate. Sloppy writing with many plot holes and B-List acting from the majority of the cast also make it hard to enjoy. Crispian makes his reappearance at the end and talks for five minutes in what seems like a desperate attempt by the script writers to tie up all of the loose ends. However, it came across as just that – a desperate attempt to save the film. Twist endings only work well when they are subtly alluded to throughout the narrative. Not when they are shoved in your face, over and over again. A poor effort which showed so much promise.

Watch the You’re Next Trailer Here


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