The Night Sitter
the night sitter | abiel bruhn | john rocco | elyse dufour | jack champion | jermaine rivers | witch | witches | curse | comedy | united states | nightmare film festival | nff | amber neukum | j. benedict larmore | ben barlow | bailey campbell | joe walz | deanna meske
Film: The Night Sitter
Director: Abiel Bruhn and John Rocco
Writer: Abiel Bruhn and John Rocco
Starring: Elyse Dufour, Jack Champion and Jermaine Rivers
Another of the films that I had the chance to check out while at the Nightmares Film Festival was this one. This was another that I didn’t really know a whole lot about and decided to give it a viewing. The official synopsis for this film is one thief, two kids, three witches, no mercy.
We follow a young woman as she is going to babysit for a kid. She seems pretty new to the area and is answering an ad on Craigslist. She is Amber (Elyse Dufour). The house she arrives at is out in the suburbs and really nice. It belongs to Ted Hooper (Joe Walz). He lives there with his son, Kevin (Jack Champion). His wife has passed away and Kevin is still struggling with it. Ted on the other hand is ready to get back out there and date.
Ted is trying to get his own paranormal investigation show and he is really into the occult. The problem is that he’s never seen anything supernatural and that is partly why his show hasn’t been picked up. Kevin is having nightmares of something in his closet and is scared. His father just attributes it to his wife’s passing.
He is going on a date with Ms. LaFontaine (Deanna Rashell). She brings over her son, Ronnie (Bailey Campbell), to be watched as well. The only real rule she is told is to stay out of Ted’s office. It actually turns out though that Amber is there to rob the place while they are gone. She calls up a buddy to bring a truck and his kit to pick a lock. Ronnie remembers something and figures out where Ted keeps the key.
While they are playing hide and seek, Ronnie convinces Kevin to go into the office with him. It is in there they discover a book that is entitled The Three Mothers. Kevin cuts his finger on a piece of paper and it bleeds on to the book. Weird things start to happen after this.
Amber’s friend shows up, Rod (Jermaine Rivers). He happened to bring his girlfriend, Lindsey (Amber Neukum). She accidentally tells Martin (J. Benedict Larmore) where they are going. He thinks that Amber is his girlfriend, even though they have just been hooking up. She tries to put the kids to sleep so they can rob the place. They are slowed up when Vincent (Ben Barlow), a weird guy who lives next door keeps coming over to see what is going on.
Things get real interesting when The Three Mothers wake up and they are actually witches. They are out to sacrifice the children as a part of the plan. People start to be picked off and Vincent is actually an expert on witches. Can they defeat them and survive before the parents get home though?
If you’ve ever read a review by me, you’ll know that I’m not normally the biggest horror/comedy fan. I feel like it is tough to make a good one. I will say for this one is that it is fun. I don’t necessarily know if I buy the premise that Amber is a thief and would do what she tries to do. I could be wrong though, as the youths of this world are much different. It is a good way though to get more people in the house so they could increase the body count. Going from this, I’m not sure that I would buy the reasoning of Ted when he returns. It is pretty mean-spirited, which is an interesting tone for a film that is part comedy.
Now I did really like Vincent. He is that weird guy that knows about horror stuff like this and this is me among my friends. I have a soft spot for him. I feel for Martin and his plight. He does come on a little bit too strong, but I’ve had a tendency in the past to become a little bit too attached. I get this is a film and it is part of the comedy that he is clinging to such little things, but it still is a bit off.
I have to point out as well that this film is definitely paying homage to Dario Argento, one of my favorite directors. The three witches are from his films Suspiria, Inferno and The Mother of Tears. They move through the book too fast for me to see if they actually use the names for all of them, but I think they do. This film also uses vivid red and blue lights, which Suspiria and Inferno utilizes as well. I can definitely dig that the film is paying homage to this great director. I feel this is for the hardcore fan that watches it.
This film also does pretty well at balancing the comedy and horror in my opinion. Much like most of these, we start off with quite a bit of comedic elements, but as the film goes on it builds for more horror and just has some laughs for a bit of levity. I do feel that this film kind of loses it’s a way bit as it goes on though. It still builds the tension that it needs and I thought the ending is better than many films that are similar to this. This film is actually pretty mean spirited for what the witches do. I was all in on that for clarification.
Acting for the film I thought was fine. Dufour is interesting in this role. I’ve said that I don’t necessarily know if I buy her doing what she is doing in the house, but I thought she fit just fine. She is also cute and flashing her bra I was fine with as well. Champion was good as the son who is dealing with things and his father kind of ignores it. I felt bad for him actually. The rest of the cast round out for the archetypes that are needed for a film like this, which I thought was fine. Shout out to Barlow who is that weird guy among his friends. Part of me hopes a day comes where my knowledge is needed, but then again, I don’t want to be in that type of situation.
The effects for the film I thought were fine as well. I don’t really recall if they were CGI or practical, but none of them really bothered or took me out of the film. If anything, I thought they were good and definitely were a positive. I also thought it was shot pretty well, which is also good. The use of lights I want to bring up again, because it was a solid touch.
Now with that said, I thought this film was pretty fun. I’ve stated I’m not the biggest horror/comedy fan, but there are some that are just good. I think that this falls into that category. I don’t mind the premise at all, aside from the theft angle. Kids’ accidentally waking up evil is something that isn’t new, but I thought this one does enough to make it different. This film actually has some things I found mean-spirited and I really liked it. I thought it was paced well, the acting was good for what they needed and the effects were solid. The score of the film didn’t really stand out to me, but it didn’t hurt the film either. I’d say this film was above average and I’d recommend giving it a viewing.
My Rating: 7 out of 10