Ooph. Where to start. According to the marketing department, the director (Bruce McDonald), made a splash with his previous flick, Pontypool. I’m not sure that ”a big splash” is the word I’d use for Pontypool, but I won’t argue too much; I enjoyed it a lot.
Some of the same mad genius is in play here as well, but unfortunately, Hellions is an uneven affair. Probably more so than Pontypool was. And while Pontypool had a really original idea to prop it up (based on a book by Tony Burgess), there’s nothing like this here to save it from mediocrity.
It looks good, and that probably accounts for most of the hype surrounding it (that, and the poster. Look at that fucking poster!)
And I have to say, I was a bit let down. I was looking forward to liking this. Hellions manages to be at once both muddy and obvious. When it’s not beating you over the head with the motherhood/abortion angle, you’re getting nonsensical flashes of a parallel world, weird, budget special effects and lots and lots of screaming. It looks pretty cool, but ultimately doesn’t seem to serve any purpose.
The premise of the film is fairly simplistic, but somehow confusing. Just like the movie, I am now confusing the shit out of you. What I mean is that while the movie straight up tells you what is happening eventually, in the meantime you’re watching a girl run around her house, or/and a parallel universe, always screaming and crying at the spooky little kids that want her baby. And you’re always expecting something more to happen, some kind of twist that will tie this together, but it never comes. Or maybe it does:
The cop that shows up about halfway through is both out of left field and completely on the nose. This was the point when my opinion on the film turned from ”Okay, this isn’t that bad” to ”Why am I watching this.”
It has a slightly stronger third act, but I had checked out by then. Your mileage may vary however, and while that’s a given for any movie, I feel like this one might have its fans.
2 out 5 Creepy Halloween Kids