Little Evil (2017)

Little Evil
Director: Eli Craig
Writer: Eli Craig
Cast: Adam Scott, Evangeline Lilly, Owen Atlas, Bridget Everett, Clancy Brown, Chris D’Elia, Kyle Bornheimer, Donald Faison, Tyler Labine, Brad Williams
Seen on: 27.8.2021

Gary (Adam Scott) and Samantha (Evangeline Lilly) just got married and are ready to move in together – and with Samantha’s son Lucas (Owen Atlas), of course. Gary is excited about becoming a stepdad, but Lucas isn’t easily charmed. In fact, the more time Gary spends with him, the more he is convinced that there might be something actually evil about Lucas. Not in some figure-of-speech way, but in a literal antichrist way. But what can Gary do about that?

Little Evil is fine. It’s not awesomely great, but it has some decent laughs and was entertaining enough.

The film poster showing Gary (Adam Scott) and Samantha (Evangeline Lilly) with Lucas (Owen Atlas) standing behind them. Lucas looks creepy, Samantha smiles up at him and Gary looks uncomfortable.

I haven’t seen Tucker & Dale vs Evil, Eli Craig’s first film, in many years, but I loved it when I first saw it. This, plus Scott and Lilly were the big selling points for the film for me and why I wanted to watch it although I already thought that the premise of the film didn’t sound that great to me. I mean, a stepfather who is actually proven right that his stepchild is evil sounds problematic at best (just as it would the other way round, to be fair).

And I have to give film some credit here. While it does joke a lot about the supposed evil of stepchildren, the overall feeling around those jokes is “being a stepfather is hard but you gotta try anyway” which is fair enough. [The movie is entirel focused on stepfathers. There is one woman (at least she is never defined otherwise) in a sapphic relationship who refers to herself as a stepfather, too.] Plus, the way they resolved the troubles with Lucas was a nice subversion of the entire thing (it reminded me a lot of Good Omens, if not to say that it appears the idea was stolen from there).

Lucas (Owen Atlas) standing stock-still and lookig scary while behind him a wedding party descends into mayhem.

The film is a bit predictable at times, some jokes feel a little flat (everything surrounding Gozamel [Brad Williams] in particular which always straddles the line of being a little ableist. Never outright going there, but always lurking, so it made me really uncomfortable) and I would have liked a little more for Samantha as a character.

But the cast is good, and there is fun to be had with the film. At least if you don’t expect too much from it.

Gary (Adam Scott) and Samantha (Evangeline Lilly) at a children's birthday party, smiling at each other.

Summarizing: okay.

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