David: I’m sorry about all this Mrs. Peterson, but I haven’t been completely honest with you.
In their followup feature to 2011’s incredibly terrifying home invasion movie, YOU’RE NEXT, director Adam Wingard and writer Simon Barrett bring back the fun of the 80’s action/sci-fi thriller with THE GUEST. Full of drama, explosions, trippy set design and an amazing electro-synth soundtrack, this film is one that genre fans will absolutely not want to miss.
Not long after the Peterson family lost their son during combat, a mysterious stranger named David (Downton Abbey‘s Dan Stevens) shows up at their doorstep claiming to have been friends with their son. Still grieving in their own ways, the family welcomes David into their home to stay for a few days. As David begins to learn secrets about each family member, their lives begin to change as people around them start showing up dead. But as events continue to pile up, the family finds odd security in his presence and he extends his stay even longer. Soon, the family begins to suspect something isn’t exactly right when their daughter Anna calls the nearest Army head quarters and makes an inquiry into who exactly David is.
The Wingard/Barrett duo blend their latest with the perfect mix of comedy, action and entertainment the entire way through the film. What begins as a thriller, all of a sudden makes a shift into non-stop action with a sci-fi element that turns the entire tone of the movie on it’s head. It is HALLOWEEN meets TERMINATOR, if that would even be possible, but somehow it never comes across as phony or even as a B-movie. The final act of the film takes place in a school gymnasium where a Halloween dance is being set up, and this scene will be more than satisfying to audiences who will appreciate the mirror mazes, hallucinogenic lighting schemes and the 80’s soundtrack. THE GUEST is a genre throwback that gets it right form beginning to end.