You brought them into this world. Now … They will take you out.
I love this tagline, and I loved this fresh British horror movie.
Four little-uns, one moody teenager and two sets of pushy parents spend time together in one spacious country home. It’s the festive season and Elaine (Eva Birthistle), her three offspring and her husband Jonah (Stephen Campbell Moore) go to stay with her sister Chloe and her family.
As the story evolves it becomes clear that all four parents have their own misguided agendas when it comes to childrearing, as many parents do. And, all four of them are annoying in their own way, especially mother Chloe (Rachel Shelly – aka Brit Helena Peabody from the L Word).
So, it’s particularly powerful when these dysfunctional parents get a major wake up call as their ‘gold star’ kids fall victim to some mysterious virus and turn against them.
Only rebellious teenager Casey (Hannah Tointon – aka the late Warren’s sister Katy in Hollyoaks) stands apart from the others. She didn’t want to be there in the first place, and spends much of her time going outside to use her phone. However, as events unfold and the sick chaos escalates, she seems the only one with any sanity.
Creepy kids in a horror film are always a winner with me and this one is no exception.
The evil infants giggle and play as they deliver their horrid acts of violence and the relentless sense of dread keeps you breathless throughout.
Once the demonic brats get stuck in, the blood and gore abounds. You barely realise it at the time, but most of it is suggestion rather than full-on on-screen violence. The more terrifying visuals are in fact the bright and colourful children’s toys and clothes which take on a sinister edge as the blood starts staining the snowscape.
These evil tots will have you wincing and squinting at the screen throughout. Those suggestions of violence will set your teeth on edge, send your stomach churning and see your knees weakening. And, by the end, you probably won’t be able to look at a small child again without worrying irrationally about the amount of potential weapons they might have within their reach.
The Children is showing tonight 6th August on Sky Movies Premiere at 11.20pm