The Visit - 2.5 Stars
When I attended the screening of The Visit, the audience was clearly awaiting their next installment of scary screen moments – the tension in the cinema was almost palpable. Yet, while the official trailer sets this movie up as a nail-biting horror story, there were some laughs too.
The story line is straightforward – a single mother, who is estranged from her own parents, finds herself agreeing to allow her parents and children meet for the first time, while she has an opportunity to spend time with her boyfriend.
The children, Becca (Olivia DeJonge) and Tyler (Ed Oxenbould), are able to travel independently to the grandparents farm and stay for a week. Becca, a budding filmmaker, decides to use the visit as an opportunity to make a documentary. It soon becomes apparent, however, that something is not quite right with Nana and Pop-Pop. Unfortunately, the rest of the story is pretty easy to guess, but I won’t include any spoilers here.
As a horror movie there are too many flaws in the movie for my liking. Indeed, the mixing of genres is perhaps the reason that this movie doesn’t quite hit the mark.
Although it is not evident why Becca and Tyler should be Australian, one of the saving graces of the movie is the casting of DeJonge and Oxenbould in these roles. While the roles of Nana and Pop-pop are played well by Deanna Dunagan and Peter McRobbie, respectively, the script and the direction limited the opportunity for them to do more.
So, back to the audience – most left smiling and laughing rather than looking like they’d just had a scary experience at a great horror movie.
Review by Mark Mackay
Screening courtesy of Universal Entertainment