Mockingbird (2014)★★★★☆


I’m no longer surprised to see just how low the ratings are on IMDb or Rotten Tomatoes for most of the movies I like. Wait, let me clarify…for most of the horror movies I like. Generally my opinions are in line with the majority’s for other genres. Except for Melancholia. That movie is the worst movie I have ever seen, ever, and I’ve seen The Cable Guy. And somehow Melancholia has a 79% on Rotten Tomatoes and 7.1/10 on IMDb.

On Netflix, however, I find that the ratings tend to be a bit more in line with my own. So I was a bit surprised to see that this movie had only one star on Netflix. And, of course, being the person that I am, I had to watch (and write about) it. Because I’d seen it before, and I knew I definitely would have rated it above one star. And watching again has only confirmed that, and maybe confused me. Who can I trust for scary movie recommendations now, if not Netflix?

The other reason I wanted to watch this one again is because Emily Alyn Lind is in it, albeit for less than five minutes of total screen time. I still think she’s awesome. What I didn’t realize until tonight was that the other little girl in this movie is Alyvia Alyn Lind, Emily’s younger sister. It turns out the whole family is full of decent actors, since their older sister has a recurring role on the TV show Gotham (which I’ve never seen, but have heard good things about) and their mother is Barbara Alyn Woods, of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (and One Tree Hill) fame.

Or maybe I just really wanted to watch a guy dressed as a clown (floppy shoes, big red nose, white makeup, and all) say “winner, winner, chicken dinner!” That scene alone would probably have gotten this movie 3/5 in my book. But the whole thing is creepy and intriguing, the acting is believable, and the found footage aspect is handled pretty damn well (and it means no awful background score!). And how many movies open with a boy who can’t be more than thirteen years old getting shot in the head?

The ending – and to be clear here, I’m talking only about the last fifteen seconds or so where there’s that final reveal, because the few minutes leading up to that reveal are the scariest minutes of the whole movie – was kind of incredibly stupid, I’ll admit, but the rest of the film had me so scared the first time I watched it that I didn’t really care. I cared a little bit more this time around, because I knew it was coming and still kind of hoped the ending wasn’t as bad as I had remembered…but since this movie is 95% awesome, I can forgive that the crappy 5% is the last impression you’re left with. Well, mostly forgive, anyway.