Child Eater Movie Review
“Child Eater” never lives up to its potential.
The indie horror film “Child Eater” starts off with an unsettling opening sequence involving a hurt young child holding one of her eyeballs. Who hurt her and why is a mystery at this point. The film then jumps ahead in time 25 years where we find a pregnant woman (Helen) babysitting a young boy (Lucas). We (the audience) soon learn that Lucas and his father are living in an area that has a screwed up past involving a murderous old man (Robert Bowery) who ate the the eyes of children to stop from going blind. Bowery has unsurprisingly become a local legend/monster, but hasn’t been seen in decades. As you can probably guess, Bowery has resurfaced and he has his sights set on Lucas. After Lucas disappears from his home, Helen, the local law enforcement and a mysterious unstable gun toting woman are all on the lookout for Lucas. Unfortunately for them, their search becomes a living nightmare with Bowery on the loose.
On paper “Child Eater” sounds like a creepy horror film that boasts a unique new “monster” and, indeed, writer/director Erlingur Thoroddsen certainly does his best to create an atmospheric horror tale built around the eye eating psychopath. Alas, his valiant efforts never quite pan out.
“Child Eater” is a downright frustrating horror movie. The director’s talent is evident and the titular killer and his mythology are undoubtedly worthy of a movie, but they are both marred by a bland lead in Cait Bliss, clunky editing and scene transitions, an unshakable resemblance to “Jeepers Creepers,” overly choreographed scares and tension, and a surprisingly sluggish pacing for an 82 minute runtime. The biggest disappointment, however, is that you are left wanting more from the underutilized Bowery. Granted, sometimes less is more, but more would have been nice here as it felt like we just got a tease.
Overall Thoughts: I really wanted to like “Child Eater,” but it could and should have been more effective. Perhaps if there is a sequel we can get a movie that better services the promising Robert Bowery villain.
Note: “Child Eater” is scheduled to be released on DVD and digital platforms Match 28, 2017.
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