I’m glad Netflix has gotten into the movie production game, but man, they really need to step it up. It’s not quite bad enough to call “mediocre,” but I can say with 100% certainty I’ll never watch it again.
Adam Scott and Evangeline Lilly play newlyweds in Little Evil, a comedic take on Richard Donner’s The Omen. What Lilly failed to mention was her odd little boy, who Scott struggles to connect with, may or may not be the Antichrist. The concept is ripe for dark fun, but dressing the boy exactly like Damien and surrounding the leads with stock comedy characters isn’t very creative. This is routine stuff, only marginally better than your average Adam Sandler flick.
The supporting cast is decent enough. You get Sally Field, Clancy Brown, Donald Faison, and Bridget Everett who plays the kind of sidekick usually reserved for dimwitted males. She’s a dude-bro who makes dumb sex jokes and owns a monster truck. I like it and I don’t… good idea, disappointing execution.
What I loved about The Omen was I couldn’t wait to see how it resolved; you knew they probably wouldn’t kill a kid in a Hollywood movie, but if Gregory Peck didn’t kill the kid, the world—and all its children—would die. There was a little bit of that suspense in Little Evil, too, but then the filmmakers cheat and give themselves an easy out. That decision takes us far from the realm of “dark comedy” and puts us right back into “routine comedy” territory.
I love a good comedy, but this ain’t one of ’em. There are funny moments and it never really felt insulting to the intelligence, but rarely did I laugh out loud. Oh well, it just isn’t my kind of movie.
While Netflix Originals aren’t quite as good as theatrical productions, they’re a helluva lot better than the straight-to-video trend which proceeded them. Little Evil isn’t a movie I would recommend if it had premiered in theaters, but it’s an okay watch for a casual afternoon, provided you already subscribe to Netflix. I certainly don’t think it’s as funny or well made as the director’s Tucker & Dale vs Evil, but you could do a lot worse.