Stepson from Hell (Film Review: “Little Evil”)

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What to do when you marry the woman of your dreams only to discover that her adorable young son is, in fact, the Antichrist? Comedy and Horror meet in Little Evil, a hilarious take on the Blended Family.

 

SnapShot Plot

The newly released Netflix original movie, Little Evil  turns the Antichrist trope right on its 666 birth-marked head. It’s a self-mocking blend of slapstick mayhem and ghoulish horror that anyone familiar with the roots of its homage will appreciate, specifically The Omen franchise, Rosemary’s Baby and even a sprinkling of Poltergeist and The Shining.  Indeed, the wink-to-the-camera is so straightforward that at one point in the action, a character actually references The Omen’s Gregory Peck and his moral struggle over the prospect of slaughtering his own son for the salvation of all mankind. But I’m jumping ahead of myself.

Adam Scott (The Overnight) and Evangeline Lilly (ABC’s Lost) are Gary and Samantha, ‘brand newlyweds’ who’ve rushed into marriage with little thought to how this new union might affect Samantha’s strange young son, Lucas (played with a malicious glint in the eye by little Owen Atlas). Soon Gary starts wondering if Lucas isn’t Satan’s spawn and finds himself in a support group with other beleaguered stepdads whose complaints about their difficult stepkids strike Gary as troubling, but still on a Human scale compared to the Resident Evil sleeping in the upstairs bedroom and talking through a diabolical sock puppet with the horns of a goat, named Leroy. It’s only a matter of time before his worst fears are realized and Gary (like Gregory Peck before him) must choose fatherhood or the destruction of little Lucas, with the End of Days looming in the balance for all of Humanity.

 

 

 

Parting Shot

Little Evil is written and directed by Eli Craig, whose hilarious 2010 comedy, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil proved just how far a tongue could be inserted into a cheek (cinematically of course). Little Evil is not a movie with deep character portrayals; it’s not meant to be. And before you think you know how it will end – for the flash forward scene that begins the film – there’s a fine twist that will put a smile on your face and keep it there through the closing credits. There’s also a wonderful supporting cast in Little Evil, including Clancy Brown as Rev. Gospel, Tyler Labine as the paranoid videographer (another Omen reference), and Sally Field in a small role that’s reminiscent of Ruth Gordon in Rosemary’s Baby.

Fatherhood is hard. Being a stepfather is hard, too, especially when you have to compete with fire and brimstone for the heart of your kid. Sometimes the key is to simply look up.

Little Evil is presently streaming on Netflix.

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YouTube Trailer:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mnj-MXs1yVU

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