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The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

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The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Old 10-13-09, 06:33 PM
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The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14



IMDB link for The Girl Next Door (2007)

Selection made by terrycloth.

These "2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day #" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 Films in 31 Days subset.

General discussion on the 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge goes here, your list for the Challenge goes here.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day. You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day. Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.

Spoiler tags will not be needed, as it will be expected that anyone here has seen the film.

Do not read this thread if you have not seen the film, unless you don't mind the ending being spoiled for you.
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Old 10-13-09, 07:47 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Emile Hirsch is terrifying in it!
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Old 10-14-09, 01:03 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

I enjoyed this film. Personally, I get sucked into any movie that focuses on kids back in the 50s/60s. I started thinking about it--A Christmas Story, The Sandlot, Stand By Me--all among my favorites. I didn't grow up as part of that generation, but the innocence that's often portrayed by the youth of that era draws me in.

Of course, this movie centers on the innocence that is taken away from a group of neighborhood kids. It's tough to watch, obviously. Which leads me to wonder why some of these young kids were drawn into being spectators in Ruth's basement. Considering this is based on true events, it's hard to argue against whether something on the screen actually could happen.

One of my favorite parts of the movie is the opening/closing bookend moments involving David as an adult. Towards the end of the movie, I had almost forgotten of the scene where David saved the pedestrian's life at the beginning. Only after they flashed back to him did I recall that moment and realized how things had come together.
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Old 10-14-09, 01:33 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

This isn't part of my horror viewing for this year's challenge but I watched this twice when it first arrived on DVD, and subsequently read Ketchum's novel. Strong stuff. The mother is played so terrifyingly well by Blanche Baker. She absolutely nails it and makes the whole thing believable. It's creepy as hell when the kid's refer to having their "own game" and when we discore what it is.

I'm not a fan of Ellen Page, but has anyone seen American Crime? Apparently it's also telling a version of the real crime that this story is based on. I haven't seen it.
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Old 10-14-09, 08:46 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

i guess since i picked this id chime in and give my impressions.

im into all horror mainly bc i like watching creativity in death scenes, but will watch damn near anything horror and have NEVER been bothered by anything iv seen in the movies. then i randomly bought this dvd in a 5$ sale. sat on my shelves for bout a yr and finally put it in.

the actors did an awesome job and actually made me hate everyone of them and feel actual sympathy for the two girls where half way thru i made myself sit thru it for a smidgen of hope. and nothing but more torture. Iv never invested so much in a movie before and it was wierd for me having emotions and not laughing during the torture/kill scenes like i normally do. i remember after the movie i turned off the tv and went to bed in silence. (which was the last time Iv done that, becauise i always put in a horror movie to fall asleep too)

today i brought it in to watch with some coworkers and they all had reactions as myself where most just walked out the room halfway thru.

this is the greatest movie i never want to ever see again.
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Old 10-15-09, 07:49 AM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Very disturbing. Well done, but wow, mega disturbing.
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Old 10-15-09, 02:50 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by indiephantom View Post
I'm not a fan of Ellen Page, but has anyone seen American Crime? Apparently it's also telling a version of the real crime that this story is based on. I haven't seen it.
It's OK. Nothing special. It's much more a courtroom drama than it is a Horror film.

but Ellen Page being tortured gets a from me.
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Old 10-15-09, 05:21 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by terrycloth View Post

this is the greatest movie i never want to ever see again.
This movie has been on my mind all day since seeing it last night - have to agree that I don't want to see it anytime soon again. I have never been so angry when watching a movie before. Can't say I 'enjoyed' it, but it is just an incredible movie experience.
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Old 10-15-09, 05:23 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

^ than you guys would really hate the book.
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Old 10-15-09, 07:43 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by LickTheABCs View Post
^ than you guys would really hate the book.
Knowing what to expect, I may just have to find it and read it. It's such a deceptive movie for the first third. Thought it was going similar in tone to "Stand By Me". Man, was I wrong!
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Old 10-16-09, 08:40 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Watched this today and I have to say that it horrified me more than any of the other movies I've watched have.

Just goes to show that monsters/creatures and ghosts are scary but PEOPLE are much scarier!

I can't say I would watch this movie again, but it is a great movie.
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Old 10-16-09, 10:18 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

i actually bought the book and couldnt get thru it. bought it mainly to get signed myjack ketchum *cool guy btw* and the story that finally broke me
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Old 10-17-09, 01:14 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

I watched this earlier this morning, not exactly the best wake-up movie. I wasn't as high as some of you are about a few of the kids' performances. In fact, there were a few moments when I burst out laughing because I found the line readings too ridiculous - and at important points, too.

Hard to believe that the older sister from Sixteen Candles would do all those things! Cracked me up when I realized who the actress was. She was really good in this film, but I think the script let her down a bit. It just all went too quick, in my opinion. It would have been more effective if we had seen a greater passage of time in between events and really show how the whole neighborhood was brought into this. You know this was a gradual process, but the movie really compressed things, instead focusing on what felt like shock rather than dwelling in the psychology of it. I'm sure the book was much more effective in doing that.

I also think that as horrifying as the real true story is that the movie (not sure about the novel) didn't have to go as broad as it did. I mean, a blowtorch to the vagina? Did we really need that for anything other than shock value? Sometimes the real truth is more or at least just as horrifying as what we can make up. In this case, I thought doing that was a bit too ridiculous and over the top.

I will say that this movie does have me interested in seeing how the story is handled in American Crime. It just makes you wonder how people could participate or watch something like this go on and not say anything about it.
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Old 10-17-09, 01:28 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by clckworang View Post
I also think that as horrifying as the real true story is that the movie (not sure about the novel) didn't have to go as broad as it did. I mean, a blowtorch to the vagina? Did we really need that for anything other than shock value? Sometimes the real truth is more or at least just as horrifying as what we can make up. In this case, I thought doing that was a bit too ridiculous and over the top.
I liked the movie, but this is exactly what I thought the first time I saw it. The real Sylvia Likens case was bad enough without the added shock value, so there was really no point in adding it.

Some movies can get away with being merely for disturbing nature or shock value, this of all films didn't need it.

Just look at American Crime, is it as disturbing? No, but it is still disturbing.. and that's a courtroom drama.

Last edited by LickTheABCs; 10-17-09 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 10-18-09, 02:05 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by LickTheABCs View Post
but Ellen Page being tortured gets a from me.
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Old 10-18-09, 02:41 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Definitely a depressing film, simultaneously disturbing and infuriating. As a true crime aficionado, the Likens case is one of the worst I've ever come across. It disgusts me to the core how lightly some of these people got off. Anyway, back to the film... I thought it was a fine adaptation of one of Jack Ketchum's strongest novels. That said, I feel that The Lost is the best adaptation of his work and would recommend it to anyone reading this thread.
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Old 10-18-09, 02:56 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

^ I thought The Lost was pretty terrible. Only the last 20 or so minutes were worth watching. That's just me though.
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Old 10-18-09, 06:03 PM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

^ From what I've seen, people have certainly been split on it. I thought it worked quite well, especially coming from the guy who directed I Know Who Killed Me. Not that I hated that one or anything. It's enjoyable camp and the atmosphere is undeniable.
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Old 10-20-09, 08:46 AM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by nantaprong View Post
I guess ill have to check this one out. It looks very interesting and mysterious as well.
Not trying to discourage you from checking it out, but I wouldn't describe it as mysterious at all. Just wanted to make sure that you understood what type of movie it's going to be. There's really no mystery over the abuse this girl is receiving or who is doing it.
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Old 11-01-09, 08:28 AM
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Re: The Girl Next Door reviews/discussion - 2009 DVDTalk Horror Challenge Day 14

Originally Posted by J. Farley View Post
Definitely a depressing film, simultaneously disturbing and infuriating. As a true crime aficionado, the Likens case is one of the worst I've ever come across. It disgusts me to the core how lightly some of these people got off. Anyway, back to the film... I thought it was a fine adaptation of one of Jack Ketchum's strongest novels. That said, I feel that The Lost is the best adaptation of his work and would recommend it to anyone reading this thread.
Originally Posted by LickTheABCs View Post
^ I thought The Lost was pretty terrible. Only the last 20 or so minutes were worth watching. That's just me though.
I pretty much enjoyed The Lost. The lead wasn't as good as he could have been.

And after viewing this film I researched the real life case a bit, and it disgusted me as well.

And I'll second that Blanche Baker nailed the role.
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