• Marah Heikkila

Review: Say bye, bye to 'The Bye Bye Man'


Horror films are either a hit or miss, especially now because of the scrutiny that comes with it. Films like “The Conjuring” and “Insidious” have grossed high within the box office due to appeal and the positive take viewers have after watching the film, while other films have plummeted when it came to grossing numbers. In order to have a high grossing horror movie there must be an ornate sense of originality as well as bold and strong antagonists that instill pure terror into the movie viewers.

“The Bye Bye Man” had a promising sense of these elements within the trailer, but that sense was broken as soon as the film was released in theaters. The setting includes three college students that implement the underlying issues they hold toward each other, which become deadly due to the antagonist,” The Bye Bye Man.”

The antagonist in the trailers contained elements that excited me; it looked like a new story plot that would truly be spine chilling. After watching the film I was seriously disproven. “The Bye Bye Man” himself only made a few appearances that didn’t last more than a minute and the depth behind the character was lacking. It was a feeble attempt at combining horror elements seen in films like “Sinister” and “The Boogeyman.”

Antagonists within horror firms often have a trivial pivot point to let the audience understand their origin, but there was nothing like that in this film. The whole presence was vague and lacked originality when it came to the jump scares. There was also a lack of depth within the characters, which was practically non-existent. The constant predicting of everything that would happen was also a throw off.

One interesting and neat concept that was used in the film was the line “don’t think it, don’t say it,” which can put the viewer at unease. That whole line implodes the characters’ minds because when someone is told not to think or do something they often do it. This line was a very nice twist to create a sense of unease within theaters because of the reverse psychology factor implemented in the film. Although the factor of reverse psychology was present, that was about one of the only unique twists within the movie.

One more useful technique utilized in “The Bye Bye Man” is a character would only have to say his name once and anyone who heard it would immediately be doomed to committing acts they’d never do sanely. Ultimately, after these acts would be committed, the name would spread unless the strain of people who originally heard it were stopped.

The fact the movie tried to implement an original story line in a different method is notable. In the end the attempts to implement different elements of successful films and make a stand alone was not successful. The film is now showing in theatres and is rated PG-13.


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