This Preview Review is a double-header with two trailers titled The Boy. One looks like a precursor to a Pscyho-type serial killer and the other is the perfect match for Annabelle on match.com. Let's take a look and see what these films appear to be offering.
The Boy (Real Boy)
What comes across as a slow-paced gritty, dark thriller, this film has a feeling to it that is haunting just from the trailer's teases. Like The Good Son meets Psycho, this trailer looks like it promises slow-cooked psychological tension boiling over into a blood-simmering stew of adolescent carnage.
The young actor who appears to steal the show is so good at his role that you may be concerned that he's not having to act all that hard. Rainn Wilson looks to be delivering his most somber and serious role yet while he plays opposite the always-reliable David Morse, our young boy's father. While the build is likely to withhold the normal level of gore, it foreshadows some disturbing brutality that is accentuated by the age of the murderer. We are not newbies when it comes to child serial killers, but when one is so visceral as this one appears to be, it's worth a watch. Speaking of nothing new...
The Boy (Fake Boy)
When a doll starts moving around on its own, our first thought is of Chucky the killer doll and all of the copycat attempts that think they could do it better. Well, Dead Silence and Annabelle turned out alright, but the true horror of those films didn't really come from the dolls themselves, but the possessors of the dolls. Could this film return the fear of dolls back to the porcelain face and lifeless eyes? Perhaps.
Despite featuring a decent cast, the trailer shows all the signs of cliche PG-13 mainstream horror. What generally turn out to be worse than low-budget attempts at originality, mainstream PG-13 horror tends to latch onto one or two recognizable cast names, while building a script focused around mystery-solving romantics that inevitably solve the supernatural problem between jump scares in an anti-climactic finale. Sadly, little in this trailer says, "give us PG-13 mainstream films another chance..." It's more a glimpse into the same-ol', same ol'.
***SPOILERS*** (Possibly...via prediction...)
I could be wrong, but I think I've already solved the mystery of this film with a little too much information spilled out in the trailer. Quit reading if you think you'll want to watch this one because, no matter how mundane it may appear, dolls scare the crap out of you.
I think Rupert Evans is the actual son of the elderly parents all grown up. The doll is actually possessed by the young girl's vengeful spirit. The young girl Rupert Evans murdered. This leads to ambiguous, silent signs given by the doll to the nanny in frightening ways, that come across as malevolent until the big reveal and Evans comes out and tells her everything before he tries to kill her. Then the doll and/or girl's spirit saves the nanny somehow, then finds a way to burn down the house with Evans inside for our conclusion. A part of me hopes I'm right...while another part of me really hopes I'm wrong.