The Prodigy (2019) (BLU-RAY/DVD REVIEW)
DIRECTED BY: Nicholas McCarthy
STARRING: Taylor Schilling, Brittany Allen, Jackson Robert Scott
RATED: R/REGION A/2:39/1080P/NUMBER OF DISCS 2
AVAILABLE FROM Orion
In her much-anticipated foray into the horror-thriller genre, Golden Globe and Emmy nominee Taylor Schilling stars in THE PRODIGY as Sarah, a mother whose young son Miles’ disturbing behavior signals that an evil, possibly supernatural force has overtaken him. Fearing for her family’s safety, Sarah must choose between her maternal instinct to love and protect Miles and a desperate need to investigate what — or who — is causing his dark turn. She is forced to look for answers in the past, taking the audience on a wild ride; one where the line between perception and reality becomes frighteningly blurry.
The Prodigy does one thing interesting and I’ll say that right off the bat. It deals with a theory some folks have about living more than one life and being able to remember the life you had before. In the case of the plot here, a killer is killed the night that a baby is born and as a result, that killer has come back in the body of the kid. As the child grows the killer inside him is becoming strong. This is not only causing an inner fight between the kid and the killer for control of the body, but this is making life really complicated for the parents. So, on the surface, the idea of the movie is an interesting one. Sadly, the film never really lives up to the cool plot and instead gives us a very predictable story that ends up just how you’d expect if you’ve seen a number of other movies that give off the same vibe and tone. You may not have seen a movie with this plot before, but trust me you’ve seen every play in this one’s playbook before in other darker toned horror movies time and time again.
The movie is very bleak and dapper. We watch the kid become more and more evil with attempts at fixing it going sideways as you’d expect. We learn what the killer really wants with the boy’s body, but there’s more to it as you’d probably guess. We have some brief moments of gore or scenes that can make you squirm a bit, but the movie ends up being about as by the book as you could get without ever really bringing anything new or exciting to the genre. It never gets hardcore enough and it never really picks up any steam as we cruise through the motions. I don’t think the actors here did a bad job, but it just feels like they really didn’t have a whole lot of motivational material to work with. The Prodigy is a movie that offers up an interesting idea and concept but nothing is ever truly acted upon in a good enough way to make it matter when all the chips are down. The end results is a sadly very forgettable film.
– Audio Commentary by Director Nicholas McCarthy
– Promotional Featurettes
– Optional English SDH, Spanish, Quebecois
Quality of Transfer: 96%