Is there anything more terrifying than a child chasing after an adult with a machete? I don’t think so…the concept and the scene itself are both chilling in a way that makes me outwardly shudder. So imagine my delight when COME OUT AND PLAY arrived in my mailbox. The idea of kids killing off adults might sound simple, but it’s downright terrifying when you see it onscreen. This film, while not perfect, is entertaining and gut-wrenching, a perfect combination for an evening of frights.
If you are not familiar with COME OUT AND PLAY, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of FlatIron Film Company:
In COME OUT AND PLAY, Beth and Francis, a happy young expecting couple have come to Mexico for a romantic getaway. Francis insists on venturing by boat to a more serene locale, Beth hesitantly agrees. As they dock on a sun-kissed beach where children are playing and giggling, everything seems perfect at first. But as they wander the strangely empty streets, an atmosphere of unease sets in: an abandoned hotel, a distress call that repeatedly echoes from a radio set, the sense of being watched with no adults in sight. When Francis witnesses the violent death of an old man at the hands of a smiling little girl, a day in paradise quickly turns into a struggle for survival. Francis must protect his very pregnant wife from a pack of murderous children and get the couple off the island alive.
Several of the reviews I have read of this film mentioned the vagueness of the opening scenes and how the reviewers felt they detracted from the film. I disagree whole-heartedly. The opening scenes might be devoid of a few details, but they were simply setting the stage for the actual film. I think you shouldn’t put too much focus on things like that, unless they have nothing to do with the rest of the film.
COME OUT AND PLAY has some downright horrifying scenes. When the children attack and kill people while laughing and singing, I cringed. When two girls make necklaces out of ears and fingers, just as they would flowers, I felt chills go down my spine; and when a group of kids are playing with a severed human head like it was a kickball, I almost had to look away. These images will haunt you long after the film is over.
And this is definitely a film you should check out. Even if you are not a parent, you can still appreciate the shock value of a plot such as this one. The idea of young kids going crazy for no apparent reason and killing adults is, well, almost unthinkable. How can the innocence of youth lead into the evil of murder? This question alone drives the movie almost throughout its entirety.
COME OUT AND PLAY is a fun film and looks good overall, but I have to confess the cinematography leaves a lot to be desired. I can handle a shaky camera in some aspects, but in this film it gets out of hand in certain places. This wasn’t enough for me to turn the movie off, but I do feel I should warn you in advance.
Still, COME OUT AND PLAY is a heck of a horror film and I highly recommend you give it a look. The film hits store shelves tomorrow, so make a note.