Saw The Babysitter and Killer Queen back to back the other day and figured, oh, what a lovely double feature. Hence the new Double Feature feature I guess. Even though I have pinned sequels together here it won’t be always like this. I was thinking more of a genre match or a mood connection, what ever works in that moment. Anyway, this is two movie reviews in one and I’m gonna start doing these more often. First up: The Babysitter and The Babysitter: Killer Queen.
Minor spoiler warning.
Both of these movies are of course in the horror comedy genre. This is something that is getting a bit more popular these days and I ain’t mad. It adds a lighter tone to the horror but it also tickles you both ways. That sounded strange but you get what I mean. Though both The Babysitter movies aren’t that scary they are still thrilling. Most important: they are entertaining! Just don’t forget to not take them too seriously and expect… god knows what.
Both movies are directed by McG but the first one is written by Brian Duffield and the second by Dan Lagana, Brad Morris, McG and Jimmy Warden. Yes it took four men to pen the sequel. Dan by the way is writing the Joe Exotic mini-series so that’s fun! The screenplay for the first film was featured on the 2014 blacklist and it was filmed in 2015.
We meet pre-teen Cole (Judah Lewis) who is a bit nerdy and still has a babysitter. The babysitter Bee (Samara Weaving) happens to be super hot though so he’s not too bummed about this. While there are a few locations here and there The Babysitter takes mostly place in Cole’s home and its vicinity. Now this I love, I’ll be honest. More compact locations are rare but work well. It’s like a twist on the cabin in the woods concept but in suburbia.
Cole decides to stay up late one night to spy on his babysitter and that’s when all hell breaks loose. Turns out the babysitter is part of a cult and there’s blood involved. That’s always nice. Bee has her crew of four gals and guys as well. Everybody is very stereotypical here but it works. Robbie Amell as the shirtless jock is basically the most cliché thing ever and yet it fits here. Bella Thorne, who I do not necessarily like, is wonderful here as a cheerleader type. The standout of course is Judah Lewis as Cole. I just liked how well established his character was. Nerdy but clever and the police code scene was brilliant. His unlikely bromance with Amell’s shirtless jock was also entertaining.
I have to say that the progression of the movie here is better than in the sequel. It has a better flow and the pacing isn’t as slow. Do I love The Babysitter? No, it’s not something that blew my mind as much as for instance It Follows did. The concept is very meh itself but it’s not supposed to be introducing us new things. The Babysitter plays around with well known concepts and tries to have fun doing it. There’s nothing bad about that. Plus there’s a really cool car scene in the end.
We are back with Cole and he is still a nerd and wears a corduroy suit. Bless him. The events of two years ago are still raging havoc in his mind but nobody believes him. He is basically being drugged and everyone, including his parents, think he made the whole thing up. Melanie (Emily Alyn Lind) who we met in the first movie is now Cole’s best friend and tries to take his mind off it all. She invites him to this boat party thing on the lake and that’s where all hell breaks loose… again. Turns out the baddies from the first movie are back thanks to Satan and now Cole has to fight them again. He is joined by Phoebe (Jenna Ortega) who for mysterious reasons is also there.
Loved the comeback of the old characters but was not a huge fan of the new additions. Though Phoebe was cool, her inclusion into the main plot was strange (not how she came to the school but later). It felt almost forced and later they of course had to explain it all. Even then it felt a bit too good to be true. There were some cool scenes and great sequences but somehow the magic had dwindled a bit. As I said before the pacing of Killer Queen is a bit slower and it doesn’t feel as smooth. Plus I wasn’t a huge fan of the setting that looked cheap and a bit… too green screen. This movie also had more parents-scenes which wasn’t really necessary I think. It dragged the movie too wide and took away from the action which was again, as I mentioned before, too slow paced. Cole and Phoebe had some really cool scenes together though and the end twist was predictable yet sweet.
Was this a great double feature though? Absolutely! Both movies are super fun and they have a certain element of silliness to them. I do think the first movie worked better but seeing how it took four men to write the sequel I can see where the too many ideas came from. Killer Queen had a lot going on and they had to fit it all in which made it a tad bit too messy. Not super mad though because I appreciate that a sequel even exists. Am I glad they hinted at another movie in the end? Maybe. I just hope they don’t throw out a wider net and spread out the location even more. Go smaller, it’s cooler. Bring back Cole too.3