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Children, The (2008)
Movie Review by The Mortician

Children, The (2008) Slow burn, creepy little British movie that starts out with some sort of goo (or pods?) in the woods and we cut to a big Christmas family get-together with loads of lil' ones (ages six and up) to take care of. Of course, the kids breathe in the (spores?) but we have to wait a while before whatever this is to make them psychotic. Yes, the airborne germs from the goo make eventually turn them nutty, a'la THE CRAZIES...

One problem I had with the movie was that the little cretins were pretty bad and misbehaved to start with- spoiled rotten, screaming, and getting whatever they wanted from their easygoing parents that obviously subscribe to the "stand in the corner" Dr. Phil mentality of punishment for bad behavior, so their change into psychotic little freaks wasn't that much of a stretch...

I did enjoy watching the MILFS (mmm, Eva Birthistle and Rachel Shelley) during the early buildup of DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES-ish soap operatic antics - plenty of middle aged curves and cleavage on parade, and all that sort of thing keeps things watchable. Also, the spoiled teenage daughter was a hottie- smoking pot with an uncle and wearing an ultra miniskirt and stockings throughout the entire movie- even outside in the snow! Kinda weird and distracting, but in a good way.

Once the little angels suddenly begin murdering the adults, though, the movie takes a nasty turn and really amps up the suspense. The acting is all too real as the parents have to decide whether to kill their children in self-defense...or die themselves at their children's suddenly murderous hands. When Soccer Mom A actually kills off little Johnny in an early scene, it feels downright twisted and wrong, and the bleak tone of doom just continues from there... Superb and believable acting by all, especially the kids!

The blood flows as the relentless killing machine tykes don't stop unless they're offed, and there seems to be no assistance from authorities due to what is going at the house being a national epidemic! The ambiguous way the larger picture is relayed hearkens back to classics like NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD and the ending is more than downbeat in an INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS '78 type of way (though I'm not giving anything away, as there's more than one twist that sneaks up on you as the final reel unspools.) The survivors are battered, bruised, and shattered, and when the end credits roll, you'll feel like you sucker punched in the gut, delirious from the violence and despair. Yes, a HORROR movie that delivers!

Well worth a look, but be forewarned- this one is INTENSE and NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH. It's downright brutal.

Director: Tom Shankland

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Rating: 9.1 out of 10.0 - 7 votes cast total
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