Ralph Breaks the Internet
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
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All Critics (1)
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An uncompromisingly wicked, subjectively brave chiller practically crying out to be discovered.
In my opinion, one of the best things about being a film critic with friends is that, at times, the friends can introduce you to films that you never heard of before. That was how I found out about Satan's Little Helper: through me and two friends being bored and needing something to watch to pass time that was not deep, philosophical, or serious. What I got out of those one and a half hours is a film that completely embraces the definition of a cult classic and modern black comedy.
The story to this film is simple enough: an autistic young boy (I believe he is Autistic and I don't care what you say. HE IS!) who is obsessed with a video game called Satan's Little Helper meets the real Satan and is taken through a night of pure hell as he thinks that all that is happening is just a game. Okay, I am giving this film points on the plot for the most part. Up until the last twenty minutes, this film had a goofy, silly plot that was just fun to watch. Then, it turned into a stereotypical horror/ slasher film that involved the family being trapped in the house with the killer and the killer looking for them. This formula has been around sense the dawn of cinema, and I doubt it is going away. Which for this film, it is a disappointment. You see, this film had a lot of potential and power with the plot and then... it went down hill when it became so much like a slasher film. I don't know why the decided on this path to take, but for what the plot is, it is entertaining. Just wish the ending was different.
One thing about the filming I liked about this film is how hilarious it is. Okay, with horror films, you tend to have dark colors and haunting music to set the tone. For the most part of this film, the colors are light, bright, and the music is mainly cheerful. While I did find this funny, I do think it was a wise choice with the cinematography of the film. Part of what makes a film great is how you can sense what the main character looks, sees, feels, and hears as the story progresses. This is what this film does with flying colors. This film takes taboo subject matter like being best friends with the Devil, killing people, and torturing others and turns them all into light heart comedy. How this film done it was genius.
A downside though has to be the acting. Okay, Alexander Brickel (Douggie: The Hero) has to be one of the most annoying child actors I have ever seen in my entire life. I mean, he can't act, can't say any lines, and just makes you want to beat the crap out of him. When I am watching a film with child actors, I don't expect much. Just a decent performance. Here, I get a performance that is worse then kids have his age performing Phantom Of The Opera. He is just a character that I am hoping would be erased from my mind. The other actor that sticks out, and who I am wondering why she is even in this film, is Amanda Plummer as the mother of Douggie. Okay, let me ask this: She went from Quentin Tarantino's PULP FICTION to... this? Not that wise of a choice to accept this script. Now, if it was for the money, why still pick this? Was this seriously the only role you could get? She done an okay job with this film, but nothing completely memorable in the slightest.
As I said, I watched this film with two friends of mine and I was laughing nonstop. It was a blast to watch this film for the first time. Later on, I showed my brother (another film critic) this film and that was when I finally saw the flaws and the problems this film had. I still laughed the second time, but the issues that does not make this film great are apparent. So, would I recommend this film? Only if you like cheap, B films, have a taste for the macabre, enjoy black humor and underground cult films, then this film is for you. Good script, wonderful filming, but lukewarm acting. Just, watch it with a bunch of friends at night. You will get a lot more out of it.
This is suprisingly creepy and entertaining despite the budget that is below SyFy Channel standards. There's no premo gore here, just a bunch of suspense and some really fucked up character dynamics. Check out this little bastard kid who befriends a serial killer cuz he thinks he is "satan" or a demon of sorts and he wants to help satan kill people, including some people he doesn't like. In terms of story this is definitely worth it compared to mindless slasher fare. I mean at least I was engaged with what characters were doing so as to appreciate all the implied themes, and not waiting for the next "gotcha" kill to serve as a cheap thrill. On Netflix instant watch and considering the low level of decent horror on Netflix IW, this should work in a snap for a weekend night's intoxicated horror marathon.
This is not a Movie this a Joke, an evil Joke. You'll laugh 'til you die.
had really low expectations going into this film as I haven't liked either of the Jess Lieberman films I'd seen previously (Squirm, Just Before Dawn); but what I found with this film was an inventive and moderately amusing little film that benefits from a talented cast and a clever screenplay. Satan's Little Helper is a pitch black horror comedy that finds time to poke fun at the American institution of Halloween, as well as ideas such as 'video games create killers'. The central idea is more than a little bit silly, but it also shows great imagination; as the idea of having a young boy unwittingly help a serial killer isn't immediately obvious, and the director does a good job of manipulating his characters into the situation he wants them in. Satan's Little Helper revolves around Douglas Whooly; a young boy obsessed with the video game, coincidentally called 'Satan's Little Helper', which was bought for him by his father. After witnessing the local serial killer arranging his victims outside his house, the kid mistakes it for an act and offers his help to the killer; which is duly accepted.
The fact that the lead character is a young boy gives the film a sort of childish horror feel; and Jeff Lieberman brilliantly offsets this with a number of amazingly gruesome scenes, which see things such as a cat being used to write 'boo' on the wall in blood, as well as intestines being used to tie a knot and a particularly grisly stabbing sequence towards the end. The director has also managed to pull in some good B-movie talent to act out his movie. Amanda Plummer is the biggest name on the cast list, and she bodes well with her role as slightly odd mother. The beautiful Katheryn Winnick was the highlight for me, and no doubt most other male audience members, as she looks great and her acting isn't bad either. Child actor Alexander Brickel, and Stephen Graham round off the central cast and overall, this movie doesn't have many problems where the acting is concerned. Jeff Lieberman's sense of humour may not be to everyone's taste; but I found it delightful, and the way the screenplay constantly harks back to earlier events is good. Overall, this may not be a brilliant film; but it's entertaining and fun and therefore gets a big thumbs up.
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