“Five Nights at Freddy’s,” a video game adaption, arrives just in time for Halloween and promises to be a delight with crazy mechanical monsters that look like Chuck E. Cheese going wild.
“Five Nights at Freddy’s,” a video game adaption, arrives just in time for Halloween and promises to be a delight with crazy mechanical monsters that resemble Chuck E. Cheese going wild. The trick, however, ends up being on us.
The film, which was adapted from the video game by developer Scott Cawthon about anthropomorphic robots murdering humans, doesn’t fit well in this vehicle, and the issues begin with the creatures themselves.
Yes, they have dazzling teeth and scary eyes. But come on, who wears a bow tie like a PBS guest? They’re not so much creepy as worn out. Indeed, they act like The Terminator stomping around, but one of them is a plump chicken with the words “Let’s Eat.” They resemble grown-up Care Bears that are addicted to alcohol in terms of their appearance. One is a cupcake—we’re not even kidding.
The PG-13 movie “Five Nights at Freddy’s,” which is stuck between PG and R and awkwardly straddling the lines between comedy and horror, has to rank among the worst of all the movies this year.
Similar to the video game, our protagonist is a night watchman who is enigmatically employed to guard the wreckage of a closed kids’ pizza and gaming restaurant. We find out that a number of lost children caused it to close in the 1980s.
Josh Hutcherson portrays the guard with a combination of prickly and sympathetic qualities. He is told, “Just do your job and you’ll be fine.” “Avoid letting the location affect you.”
Why did he accept this ridiculous job? to demonstrate his goodness by maintaining custody of his little sister, Abby (played well by Piper Rubio). The legendary Mary Stuart Masterson, sulking in her role as his aunt, and Matthew Lillard, who treats the scenery like a piece of pepperoni, are among the other actors.
Using a script that is credited to her, director Emma Tammi works assiduously to give the movie a backstory and a rationale for the presence of murderous animatronic characters in the first place. A possible love interest, betrayal by family members, the agony of having a sibling kidnapped for life, and a convoluted plot worthy of an appearance on “Saw” are all present.
“I erred in judgment. Towards the end, our hero yells, “I don’t want this,” and you can feel the paying audience in the movie theatre totally agreeing.
You’ll be up at night wondering about so many things. Why was the Romantics’ “Talking in Your Sleep” used so frequently? Why is it that the screenwriters don’t get human deterioration? Why does the conversation frequently swing so sharply from flirtatious to angry within the same scene? Why does the insane Care Bears’ ability to communicate come to light only in the final ten minutes?
Ironically, a lot of the most exciting action takes place in a dreamlike state. When that occurs, you might have to wake up your seatmates so you can continue watching the show. Perhaps this is the reason “Talking in Your Sleep” was required.
The supposedly deadly animatronics, Freddy Fazbear, Bonnie, Chica, and Foxy, host a kiddie dance party, which is the lowest point of the film. The filmmakers squander the rare opportunity in a horror movie to make a kids’ ball pit scary. Given that they were inspired by Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, it seems as though not even they can overcome their inner selves. The entire situation ought to have stayed a game.
The Universal Pictures film “Five Nights at Freddy’s,” which opens in theatres and is available for streaming on Peacock starting this Friday, is rated PG-13 due to its “strong violent content, bloody images, and language.” 110 minutes total running time. Four stars, but zero.