Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres this Friday from director Rob Savage and 20th Century Studios based on a short story by the master of horror Stephen King is THE BOOGEYMAN.

The Harper family is dealing with sadness as teen Sadie (Sophie Thatcher) returns to school for the first time. Along with younger sister Sawyer (Vivien Lyra Blair), the family is trying to find the new normal. Dad Will (Chris Messina) is a therapist who sees patients in his office located in the family home but has trouble talking to his own children.

Unexpectedly, Will comes face to face with Lester Billings (David Dastmalchian) who begs the doctor for help needing someone to talk to. He also has experienced devastation in his family and thought Will could relate. Will begins to suspect that Lester has deeper issues than he can handle. When chaos breaks out in the Harper home once again, it starts a chain reaction of fright.

It is Sawyer who first begins to understand that something is in their house and that something has the ability to speak. Trying to convince Sadie and dad Will, they just don’t see what the little girl does. After a gathering of friends at the Harper home, Sadie does not need any more convincing that what Sawyer has experienced is absolutely true.

Now Sadie must do whatever she can do protect her little sister while trying to make Will understand that what is in their home is powerful and deadly.

Thatcher as Sadie is a young teen dealing with sadness and grief and can’t find it within her home or with her friends. Feeling uber protective over sister Sawyer, she listens to the young girl’s tale but it takes her own moment of fright to believe. Thatcher gives a strong performance of a young girl determined to fight for family, home and whatever it takes to survive.

Messina as dad Will is doing what father’s do when dealing with fear and grief, act a bit as if it all can be explained as a therapist would. It doesn’t work! His daughters are both trying to tell him that something is in their home and he doesn’t listen – until he does. Messina gives us the broken family man who is busy being afraid of that to see the real fear.

Blair as Sawyer is so darn relatable for every child around the age of her character. Night lights on, monster check of the closet, check under the bed and anyplace else a monster could hide. Sawyer is charming, and watching what she goes through is a bit horrifying and this little actress gives it everything and make it believable.

Shout out to Dastmalchian as Lester because that man has the ability to bring you into a strange and frightening world of all kinds. This isn’t the first time he’s freaked me out and if he looks a tad familiar, he portrayed Albert DeSalvo in the 2023 BOSTON STRANGLER, Bob Taylor in the 2013 film PRISONER and 2008 THE DARK KNIGHT.

Also, shout out Marin Ireland as Rita Billings. She has an integral part to play in the backstory and the struggle is real, well done.

Other cast include Madison Hu as Bethany, Maddie Nichols as Natalie, Leeann Ross as Cassidy, Rio Machadio as Anne, Shauna Rappold as Cara Harper, Cristala Carter as Detective Garland, LisaGay Hamilton as Dr. Weller.

20th Century Studios brings award-winning films for fans to enjoy and to see more of what the studio has coming to theatres please visit There you can also discover favorite films and how to view them.

THE BOOGEYMAN is pure Stephen King and I don’t think fans will be disappointed. What I love about King stories is that it isn’t so much about the blood and gore as it is the suspense and anticipation of being scared out of our minds that is awesome. Be honest, we love being thrilled to the point of holding popcorn in our hands and just as we go to eat it – dead stop! I saw that at the screening.

There were jumps, several deep inhales followed by the infamous ‘wft’ moments. The film delves into things that have always frightened children but this time, adults are being brought back to their childhood only to discover that those fears never truly went away. Its honest time, who still walks a little faster when shutting off a bedroom light to jump under the covers, yea, thought so.

Did I jump? Absolutely, and I feel no shame in admitting it. My heart thump a few times, absofrakkenlootely! Once again, director Savage has taken moments all over the film to make sure we remember exactly who it is in the dark and the helplessness we can feel when the light is hard to keep on. I’m leaving out details of course because I want everyone to experience it without spoilers.

THE BOOGEYMAN comes in at an hour and thirty-eight minutes which is more than needed to bring this story full circle. It is dark, intense, thrilling, and brings a twisted face to the one thing we all were afraid of at one time in our lives. This movie doesn’t reinvent the wheel but it makes damn sure we hear the creaking when it rides down into our nightmares.

In the end – it’s not real, it’s not real, it’s not real!



Recommend to friends
  • gplus
  • pinterest

About the Author

Jeri Jacquin

Jeri Jacquin covers film, television, DVD/Bluray releases, celebrity interviews, festivals and all things entertainment.