Main cast: Samara Weaving (Bee), Judah Lewis (Cole Johnson), Hana Mae Lee (Sonya), Robbie Amell (Max), Bella Thorne (Allison), Andrew Bachelor (John), Emily Alyn Lind (Melanie), Miles J Harvey (Jeremy), Leslie Bibb (Mrs Johnson), and Ken Marino (Mr Johnson)
The Babysitter is one of those calculatedly edgy horror-comedies aimed at cool kids, although it also boasts some pretty vivid gore now and then. Think of it as a twelve-year old geek’s coming of age sex comedy, complete with a hot, leggy older lady that becomes the object of his bludgeoning desire, only we replace the sex scenes with chases and death scenes.
Cole Johnson’s parents are trying to mend their relationship – they are at the verge of divorce, because from all appearances they have lost interest in anything and everything about one another – and they are about to embark on a vacation as a last ditch effort to save their marriage. Hence, they hire Cole’s long-time babysitter, Bee, to stay in and watch over him over the weekend. Poor Cole, he’s bullied in school and he’s also scared of most things in life, such as needles. He likes Bee, though. Despite her looking all va-va-voom and all, she also shares his interest in film trivia and other nerd stuff; they can dissect and argue over movies for ages. Plus, he’s also starting to notice her cleavage and all, so yes, Bee is nice.
His friend Melanie lets Cole know that babysitters often bring their friends over once their charges are asleep, “to have an orgy” are her exact words. Intrigued, he decides to forgo his bedtime drink and pretends to sleep in order to see what Bee usually does after he has gone to bed. Oh, he wishes that he hasn’t done so when Bee invites a couple of friends over for a game of truth or dare, which peaks with her and her cheerleader bimbo friend Allison having a hot kiss. Oh, that’s not the worst of it: Bee ends the game by stabbing her date, Samuel, in the head with two knives and having her friends collect the blood that spews out into goblets.
It turns out Bee is a witch in possession of an old book containing demonic spells, and her friends are actually her followers who are hoping to have their wishes granted after completing the ritual and selling their souls to the devil. Samuel’s blood is the first component needed in the ritual. They also need to extract blood from an innocent – Cole. Heh, and he’s terrified of needles too. Our hero manages to fake his sleep throughout it all, despite his fear, but Bee senses that something is amiss and decides to quietly hang back in the room to see what happens next. That’s how the devil-worshiping Scooby Gang catches Cole in the act of trying to flee his room, and now they are going to kill him… unless he kills them first.
Let me get this off my chest first: Cole is supposed to be twelve, so I don’t feel comfortable watching him drool over Bee or seeing him kiss Melanie. I half expect the cops to break down my door for watching these things, and honestly, seeing a twelve-year old kid getting all horny and bothered is not what I’d consider interesting to watch. The uncomfortable scenes with Bee also go nowhere. I’d half-terrified that she will seduce Cole or something – the cops will really break down my door should that happen – but once Bee and Cole are at opposite sides, that creepy angle is dropped altogether. I’m relieved, but also befuddled. Why are those scenes included, then? Sure, Samara Weaving is hot, but I don’t need a creepy twelve-year old’s POV to know that.
That aside, this movie is pretty fun. The whole thing is Home Alone on steroids, as Cole starts running around his house to save his own skin. Unlike that other movie, his victories are more often due to luck than some unrealistic ability to MacGyver out deadly weapons from household items, so the whole thing is more believable than I’d expect from something with this premise. I’ve also mentioned that the death scenes can be surprisingly good, and Robbie Amell being shirtless just because is just icing on the cake.
Stealing the whole show, though, is Samara Weaving whose Bee is a perfect mix of endearing girlishness and stone cold ruthlessness. She’s that manic pixie girl who will turn berserk and commit mass homicide without blinking an eye, while being all sexy and gorgeous in the process.
On the other hand, the rest of the cast not named Bee or Cole are one-note stereotypes. Allison is an annoying bimbo-slut type, John is the loud-mouthed yet cowardly black guy stereotype, Max is the jock who goes around without a shirt, and Sonya… well, her entire personality boils down to being Crazy-Face Asian Chick, easily the worst, flattest stereotype in a cast of already flat stereotypes. These characters sprout lines that seem to be written by fifty-year old men who think that they are appealing to trendy young kids of today, and I cringe each time these stereotypes talk.
Hence, The Babysitter is an uneven mix of good and bad. On the good side, we have Samara Weaving and death scenes. On the flip side, we have creepy underage kids leering at Samara Weaving’s character and a whole lot of cringe dialogues and secondary characters. The climax of the movie is over the top ludicrous too. It’s a shame, really, as this movie still has its moments. Imagine how great it would be, if the cringe and the creep factors had been ironed out of the film.