Genre: Horror, Mystery.
Starring: Lauren Cohan, Rupert Evans, Jim Norton, Diana Hardcastle, Ben Robson, Jett Kylne, James Russell, Lily Pater.
Year Of Release: 2016
Certificate: 15 (UK)/PG-13 (US)
Runtime: 97 Minutes
Director: William Brent Bell
Synopsis: “An American nanny is shocked that her new English family’s boy is actually a life-sized doll. After she violates a list of strict rules, disturbing events make her believe that the doll is really alive.” IMDB
“The Boy” tells the story of Greta (Lauren Cohan) who fleas an abusive relationship in the US to take on a job in the English countryside as a nanny to a well off family. Greta introduces herself to Mr & Mrs Heelshire who exchange pleasantries before they introduce her to their young son Brahms who she will be nannying for, little does she know that Brahms is actually a porcelain doll. The couple are leaving for a holiday, so give Greta a list of demands to follow while taking care of Brahms in order to keep him happy, initially Greta decides against following the ridiculous rules, she befriends the local grocery delivery man and they start a flirtatious friendship.
Not long after Greta’s stance against the rules, strange and eerie things begin to happen, Greta hears a little child crying in the hallway, phone calls begin to cut out and most creepy of them all Brahm seems to be moving on his own vanishing from where she leaves him and reappearing in other sections of the house. During this time, events occur that lead Greta to the attic, going in there to investigate (why do people do this?) she is locked away by an unseen force/being this is where the tension really kicks in.
The cast mainly consists of Lauren Cohan and Rupert Evans who share the most screentime, Cohan does a great job as Greta playing the emotionally beaten woman she is after however long her abusive relationship lasted. Cohan does well with her slightly underdeveloped character, I say underdeveloped because her backstory is still a bit of a mess thrown together to attempt to give her some substance none of it really added to the story. Rupert Evans as Malcolm the delivery man was okay, nothing special, he wasn’t good or bad he just was. The only really good performances was that of Cohan, the rest of the cast just did their jobs.
Overall, I enjoyed myself for about 90% of the film, the ending destroyed any enjoyment I was experiencing, the film has so much potential as you trot along at a rather fun pace. It is reminiscent of 60s/70s British Horror/Thrillers one that stands out in the memory is 1965s “The Nanny”, just with added modernisations. The film could have been brilliant if it wasn’t for that awful M Night-esque twist for what felt like no reason. The film isn’t completely a mess, it has a very fun run up until that point, there is a wonderful mixture of acting, tension and general eeriness, I just feel that completely comes apart with the climax of the film.