Emelie is the movie that encompasses every parent’s nightmare when hiring a babysitter that you don’t reaaaally know all that well. It’s directed by Michael Thelin, who, as far as I can tell, hasn’t directed any movies before now. It stars a bunch of “unrecognizables”, which is one of my favourite things when watching a horror movie. When there’s a recognizable actor, you can’t help but be taken out of the movie just a tad.
Sarah Bolger plays Emelie, a girl fronting as “Anna”, a couple’s go-to babysitter’s best friend. At the very beginning of the film, you learn that “Anna” is not who she says she is as we watch the real Anna, a character we haven’t met – at all, get thrown into a mysterious black car. The new “Anna” shows up at the house, sweet as pie and the parents detect nothing amiss and head out on their much-anticipated date. Before the parents leave, in some pretty obvious foreshadowing, we learn that the children are not allowed to have cell phones until they’re 13. After the parents leave, the kids are put through the ringer… they have to watch the youngest (and only) daughter’s pet hamster get eaten by the oldest son’s snake, they are forced to watch their dad’s amateur sex tape with a woman who is not his wife(?), and then they listen to a bedtime story about a girl who neglectfully kills her infant child and now needs to find a new one, referring to the new child she is on the hunt for as her “Cubby.” Creepy. Very creepy.
Eventually, we learn that this operation is clearly bigger than Emelie alone when the parents get t-boned by an oncoming car on their way home from their date. As Emelie and her mysterious suited man’s death toll rises, the three children are fighting for their lives and Jacob, the oldest, is fighting to keep his younger brother from being kidnapped.
In a disturbing twist of events (to the parents, since we already know this), they are driven home by a cop, but on the drive back the cop gets a radio call letting him know he needs to head back to the crime scene as OH MY GOD, a body was found in the trunk of the car – the body of Anna Coleman.
This movie was tense, I’ll give it that, albeit a little farfetched. If I had children, it would probably make me think twice about who I’m leaving my children with. But come on, if I knew who the girl was, I’d have looked her up on Facebook to confirm her identity before leaving my children with them at the veeeery least!
Overall, a decent thriller (with surprisingly okay child actors) that I probably wouldn’t venture to watch again, at least for a long while!