Blu-ray Review: ‘The Boy’

After a bad break-up, Greta (Lauren Cohan) decides to take a job as a nanny in a remote part of England. When she arrives to start the new job, she finds herself in a beautiful mansion owned by the Heelshires (Diana Hardcastle and Jim Norton), who seem to be a strict but well-meaning couple. And then she meets her charge, Brahms, who is not a living boy, but a porcelain doll made in the likeness of the real Brahms, who died in a fire at the age of eight. Despite her misgivings, Greta takes the job – it pays well, and the “grocery man”, Malcolm (Rupert Evans) is cute, so why not? Once the Heelshires leave for vacation, Greta throws the rules aside and that’s when the trouble begins.

The house is beautiful, and it’s the perfect setting for a ghost story. Cohan and Evans give solid performances, given what they have to work with. The real problem with the movie is the writing. The premise is ridiculous enough, but it’s workable, given a good script. Unfortunately, Stacy Menear’s script is formulaic, depending on bump-in-the-night-style scares and dream sequences. There isn’t anything original enough to make The Boy stand out in the January graveyard of bad horror movies. The plot-twist in the third act merely amps up the ridiculousness in a movie that already produced more laughter than scares from the packed Friday-night theater. Perhaps if the movie had taken itself less seriously and enhanced the ridiculousness to turn it into a horror-comedy, the movie would have fared better.

The Boy comes out on Digital HD now and on Blu-ray & DVD May 10th.

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