Who is this Guy?
Directed by Adam Wingard (You're Next), The Guest is a thriller flick that will leave you wanting answers at the end. A stranger introduces himself to a family, calling himself a friend of their son who died at war. The young man is welcomed into their home and coincidentally, a series of accidental deaths start to occur. Are they connected to his presence? The movie stars Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey), Maika Monroe (Labor Day) and Sheila Kelley (Gossip Girl). The Guest is full of mystery, suspense and action but does it all come together nicely?....
I'm going to start off with the acting. Dan Stevens who is previously known for playing a posh totty in Downton Abbey completely transforms into a bad-ass whilst playing 'David' in this film. He is incredible! Even though the character he plays becomes less likeable as the film goes on, you cannot discredit Stevens for the effort and skill he puts into the role. I was really impressed. The supporting cast members are also very strong. Monroe and Kelley are the two leading females of the film and they both perform their roles well.
However, there is one thing that flaws this film and that is character development. From start to finish, the audience have no clue who 'David' really is. All we ever find out is that he was in the army and knows the son of the Peterson family. But, you even question this information after certain plot twists during the film. Do not expect to find anything about David at the end of the film as you do not. Some scenes come across as a bit random due to the audience not knowing why David is so unpredictable and aggressive.The lack of character development could also be a positive as it helps make David very mysterious.
The film is also very slow to get off of its heels. You have to wait about 30 minutes until anything interesting happens. Once again, this does have the potential to build on the mystery but at some points (Early on in the film), you start to wonder when the plot or story will actually start moving.
The general plot of the film is very original and clever. I did feel intrigued throughout wandering what was going to happen. The film mixes horror and gore well with action and thrills which means that the film is quite psychologically scary as some of the scenes are quite realistic (in comparison to your average horror film - e.g. Saw, Paranormal Activity). Credit has to go to Simon Barrett for the screenplay as it was excellent (when it comes to the plot). The action scenes in the film are also very well done and enjoyable to watch.
Now, lets talk about that ending. I was very impressed with the last sequence as even though I thought it was random, I also thought it was a good conclusion. The 'horror maze' was a perfect place for David to hunt down his victims. The soundtrack also added to the atmosphere. All was well until the climax was reached, you thought everything was done and dusted with but then comes a big bomb shell (I won't spoil it) which really messes with your mind. Anna Peterson says 'what the f**k' and then the credits start to role. That last sentence was exactly what I was thinking at the end. I am still confused now.
I'll be honest, I don't really know what to think about The Guest. The plot was clever but there was a major lack of character development. I think the film could have done with one final scene that ties everything together nicely. Major merit goes to Dan Stevens for his fantastic performance. I don't know whether I am satisfied or dissatisfied with the ending. I can't stop thinking of David and who is actually is.
By all means, watch The Guest- it is very enjoyable,but don't expect to be shed anymore light than you are given when David first knocks on the Peterson's door at the start of the film.