The very best thing a horror movie can do is get you so invested in the characters that it's the very idea that they are in danger that troubles you. Not the frequency of gore or the creepiness of the killers at large. And for a while, there, that's what You're Next seems to be up to: really immersing you in the family Davison. An uneven clan of resentful, emotionally distant WASPs, there is just as much tension before the killings begin during their countryside weekend getaway as there is midway through the bloodbath. The defining difference: the earlier stuff is a bit more fun.
Middle-aged married couple Paul (Rob Moran) and Aubrey (Barbara Crampton) retreat to their gigantic vacation home in the middle of nowhere, gathering each of their grown children (and their respective significant others) together for a moreover unpleasant dinner. The occasion is ambiguous, although it is suggested that the family is trying to mend some long-tattered fences with this reunion. As such, the meal proceeds with spiteful comments, passive-aggressive comebacks, and a general feeling of discomfort for the only sane one in the room: Erin (Sharni Vinson), second son Crispian's (AJ Bowen) Australian girlfriend and former student. And then, murders.
Lots and lots of murders. For no discernible reason, the family finds itself the victim of a team of eerily masked home invaders packing machetes and crossbows, bent on slaying each and every one of the dumbfounded Davisons. Naturally, as the characters fall, the stakes rise. But we lose more than bodies with each killing — we lose the fun. The fun in hearing adult siblings argue about which one of them is the fastest and as such most capable of running to get help. The fun in brothers bickering pettily about life choices while one has an arrow lodged in his upper back (that's Joe Swanberg, far and away the funniest player in the movie). Once the stars begin to get picked off with greater speed, there are fewer opportunities for these family squabbles.
The cat and mouse game to follow, however, is one a few notches above that of a normal horror flick, thanks entirely to the charms, quirks, and skills of guest Erin. Still, what we have from the second act on is a horror movie — a fun one, but nothing more. As You're Next seems to paint itself with the inventive countenance of something like Cabin in the Woods, you might be entering the game with expectations set high. Lower them just a bit, not too much. What you'll have in store is not a colorless slasher picture — it's a fun, funny, occasionally startling, and temporarily interesting. But rest assured, it's nothing too far outside the box, either.
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Twilight star Kellan Lutz has reunited with his ex-girlfriend Sharni Vinson three months after they split. The pair separated in May (13) after 18 months together, but they have now decided to give the romance a second shot.
A source tells Usmagazine.com, "They are back seeing each other, they do have a great time. They are trying to be fairly quiet about it, but they're not staying in a bunker or anything. Just a little more discrete."
Lutz proved there was no bad blood between him and his Australian ex-girlfriend in July (13) when he reached out to wish her a happy birthday.
In a post on Twitter.com, he wrote, "Huge Happy Birthday to the amazing Sharni Vinson (Sydney Time) and a Happy Birthday to the wonderful (her mother) Narelle Vinson for bringing such a beautiful soul into this world!"
Twilight hunk Kellan Lutz has split from his longtime girlfriend, according to U.S. reports. The actor has been dating Australian beauty Sharni Vinson since 2011, but the pair went its separate ways earlier this month (May13), according to UsMagazine.com.
Lutz and Vinson met while auditioning for Step Up 3D. Vinson landed a starring role in the movie, while Lutz did not.
The actor, who played vampire Emmett Cullen in the Twilight series, recently heaped praise on Vinson's romance skills after they enjoyed St. Valentine's Day together in February (13), saying, "Let's just say that I did it so well that she was surprised that I didn't propose to her."
Lutz isn't the only bloodsucker to have his heart broken recently - Vampire Diaries co-stars Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev have broken up after three years.
Let's be honest, no matter how much you might love your family, any getaway, gathering, road trip, holiday, or vacation with them is bound to be a little horrifying at times. Of course, your family was never hunted in your own home by a gang of arrow-wielding lunatics wearing terrifying animals masks as they try to pick you off, one by one. Or, hey, maybe they have. Different families have different traditions.
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The first preview for the long-in-the-works horror flick You're Next has hit the web, and much like those unsettling teaser posters, this should give you sufficient nightmares until it arrives in theaters on August 23. While the clip is being touted as a full trailer, it's almost more of a teaser, considering its focus on the sheer horror aspect of the home invasion movie. But despite being as terrifically scary and often times downright upsetting and unnvering as it is, there's also more Cabin in the Woods-esque in-joke humor than this preview would leave you to believe.
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The trailer also (wisely) leaves out a song that plays repeatedly at key points in the movie, and focuses on the ensemble as a whole. But, if you peer your eyes from the safety of the palms of your hands, try to keep a look out for breakout star Sharni Vinson (pictured), who kicks some serious ass in the gruesome, but surprisingly great, moviegoing treat. Lionsgate was wise to pick this one up, as the festival favorite has got all the makings of a sleeper horror hit.
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Watch it below, if you dare. And maybe reconsider moving your next family outing to a less remote location.
[Photo credit: Corey Ransberg/Lionsgate]
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You're Next, the home invasion horror flick from Adam Wingard, played to an eager SXSW audience at a midnight screening (well, about twenty after midnight, actually) on Sunday. The movie, which was on the festival circuit in 2011 before being captured by Lionsgate, has gained a reputation as an off-the-wall, genuinely spooky, and original horror flick. So does it live up to the hype from the horror community?
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You're Next, which feels like the fun house mirror version of the bleak The Strangers (that flick had no levity whatsoever, while this one often lets its audience laugh... hard), has more plot twists than it knows what to do with and killer(s) motives that doesn't quite match the absolutely horrendous crimes committed. But that doesn't mean you won't scream while you're watching it or check under the bed when you get home.
The film revolves around a wealthy family who have a get-together at their picturesque, albeit isolated (of course) rural home. The family bickers and catches up like any clan, but their otherwise nice dinner turns to bloody, chaotic mayhem when a band of masked villains (they wear animal masks, like lambs, in case you were wondering what the next couple years of your nightmares will look like) begin hunting them. Quite literally. With arrows.
The thing that upset me most about You're Next, watching family members scream and cry for their loved ones, was also the thing that made me appreciate it in the horror realm. Too often in horror movies, characters see their friends and family slaughtered, give a shriek, and move on like nothing happened. You're Next does the exact opposite, which only makes it all the more unbearable to watch. What makes a horror movie "fun" in so many cases is its utter detachment. Watching a mourning mother wail for her daughter whose neck has been cut by a trap wire is not fun. F**king scary, though? You bet.
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One by one, the family is getting picked off, with bloodier and bloodier results, but as the numbers begin to dwindle, Erin (a breakout performance from Sharni Vinson), a girlfriend of one of the sons begins to fight back. See, little did these invaders realize she grew up on a survivalist compound. By the time the identity and motives of the mysterious killers are figured out and Erin has shifted into full-blown kick-ass horror heroine, the film shifts gears from grim massacre to a fun 80s slasher flick.
That's not to say the scares dwindle (there's some truly unnerving imagery and a particularly disturbing exchange that happens over the body of a family member) but cheers and laughter take over in the latter half of the film. In the end, the tonally challenged You're Next sort of feels like a Frankenstein of horror movies (except, maybe, Frankenstein). All of the elements of the horror classics are there, so if you're looking for something totally innovative from your horror movie, this isn't it. (Cabin in the Woods has set the bar far too high). If you're looking for familiar bump-in-the-night scares with a big finale payoff, then You're Next will have been worth the wait.
[Photo credit: Taylor Glascock]
"I'm very happily with someone. She's a happy person, which really just clicks with me... It's really special." Twilight hunk Kellan Lutz coos about his new romance with Australian actress Sharni Vinson.
The actor has previously dated 90210 star AnnaLynne McCord and was linked to Step-Up 3D beauty Sharni Vinson last month (Sep11).
But he's been dogged with rumours about his sexuality since rising to fame, and was even romantically linked to his married Twilight co-star Peter Facinelli in 2009 after the pair was photographed holding hands at an airport.
The star shot down the reports, joking at the time, "It's the naked one (photo) of us in the bubble bath that would really get us into trouble!"
And now he's opened up about the rumours further, insisting he doesn't mind the gossip because he knows his true identity.
Lutz tells The Advocate, "I don't Google myself, but I've heard that people think I'm gay. I've heard it all. See, I don't really go after girls. Most of the girlfriends I've had have come after me. So it's really funny when girls get offended because I don't hit on them. They'll transform their insecurity into, 'Oh, that makes sense, because I heard you're into guys and have a boyfriend.' I'm like, 'Seriously? That's your tactic to get me to like you?' There will always be rumours, but I know who I am."
And the actor has spoken favourably about his homosexual fans, insisting they should be treated equally in society: "Oh, they're the best. I love them. When I meet gay fans out and about, they're so great to talk to - and I'm big on hugging, because I'm from the Midwest. They're just so energetic and loving. I'm proud to have those fans, and their support means a lot to me."
The movie hunk was photographed with a new brunette beauty in Venice, California on Thursday (01Sep11), when they made a trip to a coffee shop before heading for a stroll by the beach.
The woman has been identified as 28-year-old Vinson, who appeared in dance movie Step-Up 3D.
The pair reportedly met through mutual friends and have been a couple for two months, according to UsMagazine.com.
A source tells the website, "She's a lot of fun. They are both very into working out. They hang out in Venice a lot and just stay low-key."
Lutz, 26, split from on/off girlfriend AnnaLynne McCord earlier this year (11) and was briefly linked to Maxim model Melanie Iglesias in June (11).
When producers of the Step Up franchise first announced that the third chapter in the urban dance saga would be filmed in 3D that increasingly gimmicky audience-baiting tool so popular these days in Hollywood reactions ranged from ambivalence to ridicule. I myself was rather skeptical having been subjected to my share of hastily produced 3D monstrosities a la The Last Airbender. But after watching the film I must concede that the trendy format actually acquits itself reasonably well in Step Up 3D. I only wish I could speak the same about the film's more traditional cinematic components like plot dialogue and acting.
Indeed it’s puzzling why director Jon Chu even bothered to include them. Even more so than its predecessor Step Up 2: The Streets Step Up 3D is fashioned almost purely as a showcase for its talented ensemble of dancers who shake and shimy their way through a variety of elaborate routines and to a pulsing soundtrack of over 50 different songs. In between the dance numbers all of which are genuinely impressive Chu strains awkwardly to maintain the pretense of Step Up 3D being an actual movie and not simply the extended music video we all know it to be. When the music stops the film flounders.
The storyline which marries extraordinary dancing with extraordinarily bad acting involves Step Up 2 holdover Moose (Adam Sevani) joining a team of dancers in their quest to save The Vault a vast New York City loft where dance-loving refugees from the street can practice their craft without having to worry about being harassed by cops the traditional enemies of the urban arts. Its idealistic founder Luke (Rick Malambri) is behind on his mortgage payments and the only way to earn enough money to avoid foreclosure is for the Pirates (as The Vault’s collection of dancers are known) to win a series of quasi-underground “battles ” in which different crews are pitted against each other in loser-goes-home dance duels.
How are these battles judged? What are the rules? I have no idea but compulsory elements appear to include lots of aggressive gesticulating toward the camera lens several menacing glances and at least one acrobatic maneuver followed by a provocative gesture -- e.g. a triple backflip with a double crotch-grab. Step Up 3D certainly doesn’t waste any time on such trivial questions not when there are inane subplots to resolve: Moose is struggling to balance his love of dance with busy life as a freshman at NYU and his best friend Camille (Alyson Stoner) is feeling neglected; Luke is hesitant to follow his dream of becoming a documentary filmmaker; sultry newcomer (Sharni Vinson) is torn between conflicting loyalties to her old family at home and her new one at the vault; and some vindictive prettyboy named Julien (Joe Slaughter) from a rival crew is conspiring to bring them all down.
Who will prevail? Eventually it all comes down to Step Up 3D’s climactic Final Battle. By that time however the war between music video and ensemble drama has already reduced it to rubble.
Disney today dropped a new trailer for Step Up 3D, the somewhat-awaited third chapter in the franchise and the first entirely Channing Tatum-free edition. Those of you who questioned the point of making a dance movie in 3D, prepare to get served:
Take that, haters! Those battles are gonna look hella cool in 3D. And that voiceover dude waxing annoyingly about the power of dance? In 3D he totally makes sense. And he looks like Leo DiCaprio.
If that isn't enough, Disney also released a slammin' new poster:
Boo-yah!!! Step Up 3D stars Rick Malambri, Sharni Vinson, Adam Sevani, and a whole bunch of other people I've never heard of. It opens August 6, 2010.