Not long ago we were introduced to Annabelle, a doll so creepy that after ‘her’ appearance in The Conjuring, ‘she’ was given a spin-off film. Here we are two years later, and we’re being introduced to a brand new creepy doll – Brahms, aka The Boy. The trailers for this film have been decent, although they do appear to show what seems like all (or at least most) of the major scares, so while I was somewhat excited going in, I was prepared to be very disappointed at a lack of anything new.
After a mysterious tragic event, American Nanny Greta (Lauren Cohan) travels to England, where (apparently) the only work she can get is working for a family who live in a scary mansion in the middle of nowhere. Things aren’t quite what they seem, because when she’s introduced to Brahms, the child she’s meant to be looking after, he’s not a little boy at all, but instead he’s a lifelike porcelain doll. When the parents go away on holiday, Greta doesn’t stick to the strict set of rules that have been left for her, and Brahms doesn’t seem to like it…
My suspicions were true about the marketing for this film – mostly. The first hour or so plays out beat for beat like an extended version of the trailer, with all of the plot points and all of the scares happening more or less in the order we’ve already seen. It’s the third act where this film really comes into its own.
Without spoiling anything, there’s a large chunk of the film that hasn’t been shown at all, and the viewing experience really benefits from it. It almost instantly becomes the kind of scary film that is a little bit cheesy, and it made me and the people I was watching it with laugh, but none of us wanted to look at what was happening because it was still scary. It’s a strange sensation, but still one that’s very enjoyable.
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