Give Us the Baby, or We’ll Rip it Out of You
October has returned and, as I have been informed that I have not yet seen and reviewed every horror movie yet, that means the Horrorthon can continue! Today’s movie came as a recommendation from Shannon, who knows all the horror movies I have never heard of and knows to tell me to review the ones that have a lot of stuff for me to make fun of. This movie turned out to be one of those movies. And it is called Hellions, written by Pascal Trottier, directed by Bruce McDonald (who is Canadian, but is not one of the Kids in the Hall, I checked), and starring Chloe Rose, Robert Patrick, Rossif Sutherland, Rachel Wilson, Luke Bilyk, and Peter DaCunha.
It’s Halloween (of course) and Goth teenager Dora (Rose) has her festivities ruined when Dr. Henry (Sutherland) informs her that her boyfriend Jace (Bilyk) knocked her up some 4 weeks ago. Dora is displeased. And is even more so when her mother (Wilson) takes her brother (DaCunha) out trick or treating and she starts getting some very rude trick or treaters. Ones who trick her with the severed head of her boyfriend and inform her that the treat they desire is her baby. Also, the T-1000 is there and he’s a cop and helps her at some point.
I found this movie very confusing. And also bad. One of the big failings of this movie is how long it takes to get going. There was a good period of time I legitimately thought the horror of this movie was just the real life horror of teenaged pregnancy. I grant that nothing terrifies me more than the idea of having to raise children, but I don’t need to see an 81 minute movie about it. Thankfully (I guess?) it goes in a more supernatural direction because her baby was…an alien or demon or something…somehow…? I don’t know. They didn’t bother to explain that. And it didn’t matter because it was all a dream anyway. That’s right! They used the old we-just-wasted-your-time television trope of making a ridiculous episode that doesn’t count at all because it was just a dream. Which felt cheap. Just like when they used that for one last “scare” by having her wake up for one more attempt at spooky before she woke up again. FOOLED YOU! DOUBLE DREAM! I also wondered if the point of this movie had something to do with abortion, but if it did I couldn’t tell if it was pro-choice, pro-life, or just the way the writer chose to tell his girlfriend that having children was a bad idea. It doesn’t really matter because the movie was aggressively tame and not scary to the point of boredom.
The visuals of this movie were also disappointing. Especially when the movie randomly went sepia toned when the spooky stuff started. I guess putting Instagram filters on your movie that’s about a teenage girl is technically appropriate, but it’s definitely annoying. Most of their visuals weren’t particularly well done either. The little demon girl that melted was fine except for the fact that, while filming it, the directed seemingly accidentally upskirted the child and, instead of noticing it in the moment and filming it from another angle, just chose to blur it out. The nearly fatal wound that the doctor took wasn’t particularly well done and looked not much more dangerous than if he had cut himself shaving. They also seemed to borrow from other movies a couple times, like the sheet over the face thing that inexplicably completely disabled Dora felt a lot like a shout out to Nightmare on Elm Street. And maybe it was just me, but it felt like they were trying to give Dora a Wonder Woman in No Man’s Land scene, but instead of mines and mortars it was pumpkins blowing up for no good reason.
I guess the performances were acceptable enough, but maybe that’s just me judging it as someone that can’t act. The characters didn’t always make sense though. Like what was the point of all the scenes of Dora’s disgusting method of eating pickles? She would get a pickle, drizzle honey on it, and then sprinkle salt on it. First of all, gross. Second of all, I would never eat pickles if it was so damned complicated to do so. I assume the idea was that she was getting weird pregnancy cravings, but they never said that this wasn’t just something she did all the time. Also she was supposed to be 4 weeks in, which seems early for that. But who can say for sure what Dora thinks is normal when later she’s on the phone with the police and never thinks to say, “Hey, is it newsworthy enough for me to bring up that there seems to be a hurricane happening inside my house?” She’s also a lot more terrified of the evil children than I would be. I mean weapons or not, I will beat the crap out of a little kid. …Y’know, if they were a threat to me…not just for fun or something… She does eventually become more resourceful, and almost to the point of absurdity. She kills a demon kid with salt, finds out the gun has no effect, and so she is able to take apart some shotgun shells and replace the slugs with salt. …Did I miss some exposition earlier on when she randomly said, “Well you know how dad used to put me through basic training in military school, right?”
Dora was pretty much the only person in the movie. Everyone else was pretty unnecessary. The doctor guy mostly kills time and makes me very uncomfortable. Like, I understand wanting to get into the Halloween spirit, but maybe don’t deliver life-changing and devastating news to a young girl while wearing giant elf ears. Also, probably not wise to make house calls to a 17 year old girl. He seemed to only have the best intentions but, I don’t know, maybe bring a nurse with you? And maybe tell the girl not to apply duct tape directly to your wounds to stop the bleeding. You’re a doctor, you should probably tell her to put something absorbent down first.
So Hellions isn’t a great movie. There is certainly a lot of stuff to make fun of in it if you’re into that sort of thing, but it can take a pretty long, boring route to get there. And then it continues to be boring, but at least you can have fun mocking it. But good luck, ‘cause I probably made all the possible jokes already and left nothing for you. So I’ll just recommend you skip it instead. Hellions gets “How do you like the bath salts, bitch.”
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