The Boy Next Door 2.0 stars

Boy Next Door movie poster

When conservatives bash Hollywood, it's for films like this, with their trashy, lurid, depictions of extramarital sex between lusty moms (Jennifer Lopez, fit and flaunting at 45) and hunky high-school boys (Ryan Guzman, 27 playing 19). When liberals bash Hollywood, it's for films like this, with their themes of inevitable punishment for women who step out — even if they're separated, and even if the separation is caused by the husband's infidelity. When old people bash Hollywood, it's for films like this, with their right-off-the-rails climaxes and risible literary allusions (the wrath of Achilles!) working to undermine a solid, nearly believable setup. When young people bash Hollywood, it's for films like this, with their creaky treatments of technology and their reliance on ancient tropes (silly jump scares, the basement shrine plastered with actual photographs). And yet it works: the portrait of a family in crisis, the psycho's smiling insinuation into the life of both mother and son, even his crude raison d'etre. And dang if the final showdown doesn't include a remarkable (if grisly) moment of feminine payback. If it's trash, it at least has the sense to be gleeful about it. 2015.

Matthew Lickona

This movie is not currently in theaters.

Comments

Sign in to comment

Let’s Be Friends

Subscribe for local event alerts, concerts tickets, promotions and more from the San Diego Reader

Close