WICKED LITTLE THINGS
Reviewed by: Ryan Doom
What's it about
A widow and her kids move deep into the Pennsylvania woods where a legion of zombie kids are hungry and ready to eat.
Is it good movie?
Thereís something about the woods and horror movies. Perhaps itís the deep unknown. Perhaps itís the rural nature. Perhaps itís the creepy, inbred locals. Either way, Wicked Little Things is the latest in a grand tradition of taking audiences into the wooden abyss. Here, we venture into the Pennsylvania countryside where the film begins with a group of kids murdered by being buried alive in a coal mine in the early 1900ís. Well, these kids arenít too happy about being killed and all, so they seek revenge on, well, anything living. Fast-forward to the present where the townspeople near the coal mine (only a handful remain) all claim zombies roam the woods, though they donít seem to believe the tales despite the bulletin boards filled with missing persons. Itís like the ghost story that no one believes, though after 90 years, youíd think the zombies would have attacked by now. Anyway, the story doesnít stick with just kid zombies, nope, Wicked Little Things adds a family aspect as it revolves around a recently widowed wife (Lori Heuring) and her two daughters who move to town after inheriting an unseen home. Now this just might be me, but before selling my home, packing up everything and moving, Iíd at least check out the place, but thatís too sensible. No, our widow Karen moves in blindly and quickly finds blood on the door. No sweat. Nevertheless, as they settle in she finds thereís something mysterious about the place. It feelsÖhaunted.
Wicked Little Things seems filled with hits and misses. It effectively builds suspense as you know a slaughter awaits this family by the murderous little bastards, however, the kids just arenít scary. They look like chimneysweepers from Mary Poppins except with pick axes. They just donít seem frightening enough. Maybe that comes with killer kids. Beyond Damien, the Village of the Damned, and Junior from Problem Child, do kids ever equal true horror? By the time the credits rolled, I didn't really even understand the premise as to why the kids have continued to kill 90 years later. Do they need food? Blood? Sacrifices? Exercise? Itís, well, stupid. If they were ghosts, Iíd get it, but itís hard to swallow that zombie kids regularly kill off a small town. Who the hell would stay? Though blood is splattered, for an Unrated Directorís Cut thereís not a lot of gore. In fact, I don't see what they could have removed and kept fans entertained. Wicked Little Things also throws in a standard bad guy with links to the town, but so many generations had passed how would the kids know who was bad and good? And why would zombies care? Thatís what supposedly makes zombies so damn frightening. No one can pin point their thinking, reasoning; theyíre zombies and should roam aimlessly in search of meat. Unstoppable. Slow. Ugly. Itís difficult to buck the Romero zombie factor, which in my book, is the only type of zombie worthy of fear. Lastly, to showcase the wonderful dialogue comes from a point where mother and daughter narrowly escaped the zombies after the daughter wandered into the woods. They meet a mysterious man, who asks, ďBeen down by the old mine, have ya? You shouldnít let her play down by the old mine. And you shouldnít be out after dark, neither.Ē Stellar.
Video / Audio
Video: 16x9 Widescreen
Audio: 5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Digital
Audio Commentary: Director J.S. Cardone and star Lori Heuring host an informative view into the film and the shoot in Eastern Europe. There's nothing outstanding here, but worth a listen.
The film attempts to blend zombies, ghosts, horror and haunted houses, but if the zombies don't frighten, it's hard to inflict much fear. In other words, this thing isn't very scary.