The Turning

The Turning is another horror movie released in January and chances are, it’ll be easily forgotten by the time anyone gets to the parking lot. I could probably give anyone a test on this movie and if they flunked, I’d still pass them just for enduring it.

It stars Mackenzie Davis from Terminator: Dark Fate as a teacher in the 1990s who takes a job as a nanny for two orphaned children who live with their caretaker and she basically serves as their teacher.

Davis’ character is so ill-equipped at interacting with the kids, we wonder how she wound up with the job in the first place. Finn Wolfhard from It and Brooklynn Prince are the two children and Barbara Marten is the caretaker.

Not long after she arrives, Davis is greeted with aggressive hostility from the two kids and the caretaker isn’t that much more cordial either. The kids play cruel pranks such as faking a dead body in the swimming pool and the caretaker justifies their actions at every turn. Even Mary Poppins would’ve quit by this point.

We get to the source of the matter when it turns out supernatural events are responsible for the behavior, but even that isn’t enough to make Davis’ character throw in the towel. Instead she’s determined to save the kids even though it’s obvious that they don’t want to be rescued and that they’re doing the bidding of the supernatural force.

Based on the novel The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, The Turning takes another source material, puts it in a blender and hits frappe until nothing is left but chunks of leftover bits from other horror movies.

At 94 minutes it seems interminable and I would venture to say that the crew must have been laughing hysterically at the screenplay which makes no sense from start to finish. It relies on every horror cliche in the book especially the jump scares and other fake-out moments that seem forced and desperate.

Another awful thing I can mention is that the ending is so frustrating and nonsensical that you could give it away and it would still be confusing.

You can go out to the lobby, text your friends, get some popcorn at any point and when you come back in, you still won’t miss anything.

Grade: D-

(Rated PG-13 for terror, violence, disturbing images, brief strong language and some suggestive content.)
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