“The Bye Bye Man” (2017)
Running Time: 96 minutes
Directed by: Stacy Title
Featuring: Douglas Smith, Lucien Laviscount, Cressida Bonas, Doug Jones, Carrie-Anne Moss, Faye Dunaway and Jenna Knell
Almost everyone in the movie: “Don’t think it. Don’t say it. Don’t think it. Don’t say it. Don’t think it. Don’t say it. Don’t think it. Don’t say it. Don’t think it. Don’t say it. Don’t think it. Don’t say it.”
Another PG horror comes to bear this month as “The Bye Bye Man” (2017) an inept horror from an inept director and writer that treats its audience like fools with a storyline with so may holes you could drive another better movie through. The very idea that anyone would have the temerity to release this movie into theatres let alone ask people to purchase it is beyond belief. Not to sound sexist but I would expect better of a film directed by a woman, especially a horror film that should rely on some kind of subtly and original characters but instead we are left with some kind of a hodge posed of unoriginal ideas, plot, a laughable narrative as well as tropes in regards to the genre and characters that leave me wondering why a little more time, effort and thought were not put into this.
The film’s thread bear plot revolves round three college students who move into an old house off campus, they unwittingly unleash a supernatural entity known as The Bye Bye Man, who comes to prey upon them once they discover his name. The friends must try to save each other, all the while keeping The Bye Bye Man’s existence a secret to save others from the same deadly fate.
This film is the downside of such a good year of horror, as well the influence of a little company called Blumhouse which has produced two of the biggest horror hits of the year, “Get Out” (2017) and “Spilt” (2017), as well as some of the largest and successful horror movies of the past few years. Now it seems any production company that can wrangle some actors, a director and writer with an idea that could possibly be cut into a half decent trailer, generating interest to have their inferior film released in theatres then on DVD and Blu-ray. This may seem overly simplistic and harsh but that’s how “The Bye Bye Man” (2017), and other genre films can happen.
This film takes a ridiculous idea and further expounds on it with seemingly worthless twists, environment as well as vapid shallow characters. The main character has a back story that is right out of any screenwriting textbook, from a broken famlity who is jealous of his older brother who has his own issues, the way we know he is a deep thinker with issues – he wears a Joy Division T-Shirt, which is way to hip for this film. Whilst “The Bye Bye” man has some kind of story, apparently the way to summon him is to say his name or something, kind of like the Candyman but not – also he can make you see things or something – I don’t know I lost interest about thirty minutes into this film. There is some kind of love triangle that never really pays off, but that is like the rest of the film. Nothing ever really pays off in this movie.
To cover up the dismal performances of the leads as well as the aimless direction and the horror tropes that are everywhere, the film-makers some how managed to get Carrie-Ann Moss as well as living legend Faye Dunaway to make an appearance, how I don’t know, maybe the casting director had some compromising photos of them or paid them an obscene amount of money to be in this ‘film’. To be fair both of these actresses are wasted in this movie, they are exposition heavy with little motivation to the actual plot.
Trying to blame what happens in the world on some formless entity is naive to say the least, misleading to say the worst. At least with a horror film like “Get Out” there is a need to face up to try and answer why things happen – they are the fault of people and their narrow view points. Society can be to blame for the motivations of real people, just look at who is the US President – that didn’t come from some forces entity, that was constructed by real people.
After the year that was 2016 and the abhorrent things that have happened as well as what is happening this year, to try and pass it off as something that happens because if some unknown force is a slap in the face. The reasons bad things happen is that people are to blame – it is about the responsibility of the self and not same shapeless invisible force.
Give this movie a wide birth and go and see “Get Out” instead.
Released on DVD & Blu-ray on the 19th April 2017.