Hot Take: WORST. MOVIE. THIS. YEAR.
Here’s the easiest way to describe Slender Man: Take the worst parts of The Ring franchise, add the very worst elements of The Craft, glaze it with the most horrible moments from The Forest and sprinkle in the most dismal memories you have of Candyman and you have Slender Man. Considering 2018 has already delivered such dreck as Show Dogs and Gotti amongst a few others, calling Slender Man the worst of 2018 is a big statement. Admittedly, I’m not a fan of horror flicks but at one point, my top two films were A Quiet Place and Hereditary and I actually enjoyed Unfriended: Dark Web so it’s not like I’m not willing to enjoy a good scare from time to time. The problem with Slender Man, though, is there’s not much to be afraid of. First, we’ve seen it all before. Second, outside of some loud sounds and spastic editing forcing the jump cut down our throat, Slender Man is a bore. From the four teens completely void of personality to the derivative script that preys on an Internet legend in a much poorer way than The Blair Witch Project already did decades ago, Slender Man is an unsatisfying mess of a horror flick that at least proves sometimes you can judge a book by its cover.
Slender Man follows four teenage high school girls after they attend to summon Slender Man by watching a video with their eyes closed. (Yup! That’s a thing!) One by one, Hallie (Julia Goldani Telles), Wren (Joey King), Chloe (Jaz Sinclair) and Katie (Annalise Basso) are confronted by Slender Man after their summoning. The stereotypical group is formed much like many other teen foursomes are formed. Hallie is the athlete though we never see her actually run. Wren is the one that the rest of the parents don’t want their girls hanging around. Katie is the one with the parent who is never around which gives them a place to go without being bothered. Chloe is, well, black because, ummm, diversity?
Written by David Burke who inexplicably keeps getting writing jobs despite a lackluster resume dating back to 1990, Slender Man is based on an Internet hoax launched by Eric “Victor Surge” Knudsen on the Something Awful forums. The story behind the story is much more interesting than anything that unfolds on screen. Director Sylvain White misses the mark here despite a halfway decent history with films such as The Losers and Stomp the Yard under his belt.
Plot holes and unanswered questions litter the movie and I’d actually ask them if I had any reason to care. There are a number of scenes that lead you to believe there was some severe editing that caused some hasty decisions to be made to produce a cohesive product. What’s worse is the possibility that this was the original path and that the appearance of plot holes and unanswered questions is actually just part of the film. Let’s just say if there’s something worse to come in 2018, damn if it won’t be awful.
You broke both of your legs at the last movie you went to and are now stuck in the theater because you can’t move.
You’ve been asked to do something more interesting like, I don’t know, watch paint dry or something.