6.5/10 An interesting mix of a couple of different genres, “Come Play” is essentially a mother/son drama but surrounded in a veil of horror and suspense. The strongest and best moments the film has to offer are in the character moments. The married couple whose marriage is collapsing. The daily challenges of raising an autistic son who can’t speak. A mom’s heartbreak that her son won’t look her in the eyes. These are the moments I found to be most memorable, emotional and impactful. Gillian Jacobs continues to impressively show off her acting range and all of the child actors are convincing, especially lead child actor Azhy Robertson. The visuals are well done and the film clearly shows not only how connected we are to technology as a society, but how dangerous that technology can be. This certainly isn’t the first film to make those claims (it won’t be the last) but it is a good reminder of that fact. I also found the ending to be heartfelt and consistent with everything else leading up to it. Characters have arcs, they grow, adapt and change and that goes to the strength of the writing. As for where the film falters and has its shortcomings, that stems from the horror aspects of the film. A lot of the horror elements aren’t very original (this owes a bit to 2019’s “Child’s Play”) and even the design of Larry (the creature/monster in the film) felt like a mix of creatures including the Slender Man and creatures from “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark”. I didn’t find the film scary at all, although it does have some decent suspense. Lights going out, objects moving seemingly on their own, etc. borrows from a century of horror films that have come before it. The score wasn’t memorable and the cinematography was very basic. Overall, don’t go in expecting a “terrifying new vision in horror” as the trailer boasts. However, I would still recommend the film if you dig horror films that have more heart and less gore. For it is the film’s heart, character bonds and emotional elements that resonate the most. Probably just a one-time film but I am glad that I came out to play with it.
#LarryStoriesToTellInTheDark / #SpongeBobScarePants / #LarryMovie / #TurnTheLightsOffCarryMeHome / #TECHnicallyAutistic / #SpeakAndHell