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Horror Movie Review: The Children (2008)

Updated on December 6, 2016

Do You Know Where The Children Are?

Not An Average Christmas Vacation

A multi-family rural Christmas Vacation turns out all wrong in this 2008 film, "The Children."

When two sisters, their partners and respective children end up at one rural home for the holidays, everyone thinks the family/holiday get-together is going to be one happy family celebration. Things quickly start to go wrong when, naturally enough in wintertime and during the holidays, the children start to feel ill, mainly with coughing and feeling nauseated.

All told, between the two sisters and their husbands, there are 4 children aged from 5-10 years old and 1 teenaged daughter, Casey, who attempt to enjoy the holiday season together. 4 children, 1 teenager, 4 adults. Nine (9) people in all - what could go wrong with less than a dozen people at such a happy time of year?

(Trust me... A LOT can go wrong)

Here's a hint as to how this movie plays out...

...the movie tag lines:







T H E Y W I L L T A K E Y O U O U T !!!

(creepy, eh?)

The Children (2008) trailer

What Is Happening To Little Paulie?

The families:

Chloe and Robert with children, Leah and Nicky (Nicholas?).

Elaine and Jonah with children, Miranda and Paulie, also teenaged daughter, Casey.

Chloe and Robert have arrived with their family first - at a shared Vacation Home in a remote location which is never made known in the film. Chloe's sister, Elaine, and her family arrive just before a snowstorm makes it impossible to navigate on the roads. The shared vacation home is roomy but cozy as the families try to settle in to celebrate the Christmas/New Years season. ("Somewhere Forest" USA?).

Almost as soon as the Elaine-Jonah family arrives, Paulie is feeling sick. Sick consists of some minor coughing, a nauseated stomach and a little throwing up... Now, it could just be that the ride into the rural countryside, along some winding roads, has made Paulie's stomach a little uneasy, right?

That's pretty much what everyone thinks...

The little family reunion starts in the evening as the Elaine-Jonah family arrive, so there is need for the children to quickly settle and get some sleep, however, since Paulie's not feeling so well, he's acting out a bit. Paulie alternates between being cranky and "testy" with the adults and then aloof with the children, separating himself from Leah, Nicky, Casey and even his sister, Miranda...

The concept of isolation is effectively set upon the audience in very quick fashion as viewers realize that both families are basically snowed in...some viewers might be reminded immediately of the desolate winter scenario and situation from another movie - The Shining...

What is Happning To THE CHILDREN?

Now I really can't tell much more about the movie or I'll really spoil it for everyone who hasn't yet seen this one.

Seriously - things start happening so fast - and the bizarre, surreal events never let up, starting right as the storyline moves into "the first morning."

What I can say is that the strange illness in the children is really mind-twisting... their vacant stares and lack of reasonable responses to normal situations is, from the start, very unnerving!

By morning, the cat has gone missing, the children are coughing from time to time, and the children don't respond like they used to...

Did I say yet that: The Children don't respond normally like they used to??

Well - they don't...

Before long, there are several serious accidents.

Blood looks so amazingly surreal in the snow - but The Children don't seem to notice...

Teaser/Trailer 2: "The Children" (2008)

What On Earth Is Happening With CASEY???


Nothing is happening with Casey, the teenager, daughter of Jonah and Elaine.

Nothing at all...

Well, other than both children and adults pointing fingers at Casey for everything that starts to go wrong all of a sudden!

The rebellious teenager - yeah - that's what the problem is, right? The teenager is always the most unpredictable individual in a group of people, isn't this so?

Well - not for Casey!

Suddenly, before the afternoon hours, Casey ends up having to try to parent The Children AND parent the parents...

Just a bizarre film and series of rather gruesome events...

Poor Casey.

Teaser/Trailer 3: "The Children" (2008)

Bizarre Parental Behaviors

As The Children become dangerous and homicidal - at none to leisurely a pace at all - it is the parents whose behavior becomes the MOST unreasonable...

Not believing their sweet little ones could ever do what they're doing, the parents actually attempt to coddle them at times...thus putting themselves RIGHT in the pathway of the murderous little F- *ahem* the badly misbehaving *cough* CHILDREN.

As Casey becomes parent to all, the parents start to act out, freaking out on Casey.

Really, there are NO roles in the scenarios after about the first half hour that fit in with what we commonly think about children, teenagers OR parents...everyone is JUST SCREWED UP in this movie...

The parents act like teenagers and sometimes like little helpless children...Casey ends up acting like a parent...and The Children...


The Children...

They don't act like anything or anyone we can recognize...

Check out this film - You will not be able to look at children the same way for a long, long time!


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    • mythbuster profile image

      mythbuster 4 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      Hi breanna, thanks for stopping by to comment. What was your fave part of this movie?

    • profile image

      breanna 4 years ago

      wow I love this movie and I am eleven and I wanna give a thank to tom shankland/thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    • mythbuster profile image

      mythbuster 7 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      Hello bat115. Glad you enjoyed this review. I hope you also enjoy the movie as soon as you get a chance to view it!

      * Tip... don't let your kids see this one... the may conspire afterward if they learn any tricks from this film lol

    • bat115 profile image

      Tim 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Your review has me convinced I must see this now! The trailer isn't bad either. I'll have to look out for it.

    • mythbuster profile image

      mythbuster 7 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      I love the movies you've mentioned, Literature Fairy. Definitely worth watching - more than once! You'll be surprised by "The Children" but don't expect huge flair in the special effects and such... just a general "should see" film if you're into horror flicks. The scenes aren't terribly gory - I was really glad to note. I, too, get tired of so much gore in films these days. A whole LOT more can be done for "scare factor" with camera angles, psychological prompts in the script, etc...

      Thanks for commenting!

    • Literature Fairy profile image

      Holly Jackson 7 years ago from England, UK.

      I don't watch many modern horror movies, as i think a lot of them place blood and gore more important than intelligence and a real plot, I prefer old classics like 'The Shining' and 'Psycho.' But I REALLY wanna see 'The Children' now!!

    • mythbuster profile image

      mythbuster 7 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      Hey KoffeeKlatch Gals - Thanks for stopping by, viewing, reading, and commenting. I think people might criticize this movie (no big bidget special effects, no really big actors or actresses) but it was definitely interesting and scary. I didn't want to see any kids the next day after watching the movie and after writing this hub lol. That is - not if it was going to be in a confined space. For me, kids are okay now - in public - not in small groups lol

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 7 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Movies like this are fascinating. The trailers were great as was the write up. If your review doen't interest people in this movie there's something wrong. Great job.

    • DarkDisOrder profile image

      DarkDisOrder 7 years ago from B.A.D. (Beyond All Dimensions)

      Yeah I saw that movie, those kids looked so innocent, even as they were killing their own parents, what a good movie of manipulating the innocence of kids to commit murder, hahahahaha.

      good post