The Boy (2016) Movie Review

The Boy Cover Poster Art

2016 | PG-13 | Horror, Thriller, Mystery
97 minutes /

User Score: 61/100

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The Boy Review


An American nanny is shocked that her new English family's boy is actually a life-sized doll. After she violates a list of strict rules, disturbing events make her believe that the doll is really alive.

The Boy (2016) is an American-Chinese-Canadian psychological thriller horror movie that was previously known as The Inhabitant (2016) and was shot in British Columbia, Canada. Director William Brent Bell (The Devil Inside (2012), Stay Alive (2006), Wer (2013)) did a fantastic job directing his fifth movie. First-time writer Stacey Menear did a fabulous job without any experience under her belt. The Boy had an estimated budget of $10 million and grossed over $50.4 million in North America. The Boy contains thrills, suspense, twist, minimal violence, frightening scenes, jump scares, and a surprise ending.

The Boy revolves around Greta (Lauren Cohan - Death Race 2 (2010), Van Wilder 2: The Rise of Taj (2006), Destiny (2014)) and Brahms (Jett Klyne - Writing Kim (2016), Heart of Dance (2013), The Nightmare (2015)) who is a young boy that she is taking care of. Greta was involved in an abusive relationship in Montana and decided to leave her tragic relationship and flee to the United Kingdom for a temporary nanny job for the British Heelshire family. I was shocked out of my mind, and so was Greta to see that Brahms is a porcelain doll. The Heelshire family treats Brahms as though he is a child that is alive. I appreciate the writer including a minor backstory of the characters which helped us/the viewers to understand them better. The Heelshire son, Brahms died in 1991 in a fire when he was only eight years old. The Heelshires are going on a vacation without Brahms, the porcelain doll and gave Greta a list of rules to follow when they are away because Brahms is not an ordinary child.

Greta obeys and followed the routines at first but soon got tired of it because it is for a doll and she regretted that decision soon after. Greta started to experience paranormal occurrences not too long after she stops taking care of Brahms/doing her chores. She began hearing a child crying; Brahm is somehow moving on his own while doing magic tricks by disappearing and reappearing in a different area of the house/room. The rest of the movie was a nonstop adventure as we learn what actually happened to Brahm and his parents.

The actors did an excellent job with their performances and the director excelled executing this film to being a suspenseful, scary movie from the beginning to the end. The special effects department, cinematography, editing department and sound department flourish. The Boy was a film that I was not looking forward to seeing but my teenager wanted to, and I was happy that I gave it a chance because it was more than I expected it to be. I thought this film was going to be a cliche to so many other doll films out there, but it had enough of its own content and meat to score an eight.

About The Boy 2016

Title: The Boy
Original Title: In a Dark Place, The Inhabitant
Year: 2016
Runtime: 97 minutes
Type: Movie
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Mystery
Score: 4 / 5 stars
Avg. Rating: 3/5 stars from 46 users.
Total Avg. Votes: 46
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Starring: Matthew Walker, Rupert Evans, Ben Robson, Lauren Cohan, Stephanie Lemelin, Jim Norton, Jett Klyne, Scott McGlynn, Diana Hardcastle, James Russell, Lily Pater
Writers: Stacey Menear
Director: William Brent Bell