Connect with us
there's something wrong with the children

Movie Reviews

‘There’s Something Wrong with the Children’ review: Clever take on creepy kid sub-genre

Refreshing on a number of levels.

There’s Something Wrong with the Children sounds like just another entry in the creepy kid sub-genre. Ellie (Amanda Crew, Silicon Valley) and her husband Thomas (Carlos Santana) and their two children have decided to take a weekend trip to the woods. Margaret (Alisha Wainwright, Palmer) and Ben (Zach Gilford, Midnight Mass) decide to join their longtime friends on the getaway. Ben soon begins to suspect the something is wrong when the kids being to act strangely after disappearing in the woods one night.

It is a simple set-up that gives an audience a good idea of exactly what is going to happen. The film delivers on these expectations as the two children all but skip meanspirited mischief making and head straight into the violence. The kids have also acquired some mysterious new skills and have become really good at blaming Ben for every evil act they commit.

Listen to the latest episode of the AIPT Movies Podcast!

Therein lies much of the tension in There’s Something Wrong with the Children. Ben takes mood stabilizers, and because of this, the others do not entirely trust his judgment when he warns them about what the kids are doing. Writers T.J. Cimfel  and David White (who worked together on V/H/S Viral) and director Roxanne Benjamin (Body at Brighton Rock) treat this with sensitivity. Instead of stereotyped “episodes”, the film uses the stigma that exists around mental health to further the plot while creating suspense. It is refreshing on a number of levels.

(It is also neat to see the gender roles flipped as the character of Ben is one that would have been written as a female even a few short years ago.)

Which is not to say that all traditional horror aspects tropes have been ignored. The film is reminiscent of something from a different decade, especially in its great opening and title card. The music is consistently creepy and the scares are very effective. There’s Something Wrong with the Children does lose its way once all the subtly is removed in the final act, but it is still worth checking out.

Join the AIPT Patreon

Want to take our relationship to the next level? Become a patron today to gain access to exclusive perks, such as:

  • ❌ Remove all ads on the website
  • 💬 Join our Discord community, where we chat about the latest news and releases from everything we cover on AIPT
  • 📗 Access to our monthly book club
  • 📦 Get a physical trade paperback shipped to you every month
  • 💥 And more!
Sign up today
Comments

In Case You Missed It

Full June 2023 DC Comics solicitations: New Penguin, Joker, and Milestone series Full June 2023 DC Comics solicitations: New Penguin, Joker, and Milestone series

Full June 2023 DC Comics solicitations: New Penguin, Joker, and Milestone series

Comic Books

Star Wars: The Mandalorian (Disney+) Star Wars: The Mandalorian (Disney+)

‘Star Wars: The Mandalorian’ season 3 chapter 19 ‘The Convert’ recap/review

Star Wars

X-Men Monday #196 - Charlie Jane Anders Talks 'New Mutants: Lethal Legion' X-Men Monday #196 - Charlie Jane Anders Talks 'New Mutants: Lethal Legion'

X-Men Monday #196 – Charlie Jane Anders Talks ‘New Mutants: Lethal Legion’

Comic Books

EXCLUSIVE Marvel First Look Avengers #2 EXCLUSIVE Marvel First Look Avengers #2

EXCLUSIVE Marvel First Look Avengers #2

Comic Books

Connect
Newsletter Signup