Weekly Review: Knock Knock (2015)

When a man lets two young women into his home on a rainy night, he gets way more than he bargained for.

I saw the trailer for Knock Knock during one of those YouTube spirals where you start somewhere and don’t know how you ended up where you are. I’m a pretty big fan of Keanu Reeves (I think he’s cute), and I really liked John Wick, so I figured I’d give Knock Knock a try.

I regret it.

To begin, Knock Knock is directed by Eli Roth. Roth also had a hand in the screenplay. If you’re familiar with some of Roth’s previous work (Cabin Fever, The Green Inferno, Hostel), you’ll have a better idea of what to expect in this particular movie.

I’m not typically one of Eli Roth’s biggest fans. I chose to avoid seeing The Green Inferno because I knew he directed it. I own Hostel because I bought it in a bargain bin, but I’ve never watched it entirely, and the shaving scene from Cabin Fever haunts me to this day. I don’t know why I was hoping Knock Knock would be different, but I was definitely hoping, and my hopes were crushed.

I’ll give my biggest criticisms quickly, like ripping off a bandage. I thought that Knock Knock was an awful film, making a mockery of male rape victims, pedophilia and child molesters, feminism, infidelity, and a truck load of other sensitive topics. There were many moments where something could have been added to the story in order to make the situation less ridiculous, but that never happened. I felt that Knock Knock was ridiculous in all of the wrong ways, and when it was over, I wished I had never watched it.

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I will point out at this point that the script was written by three different men. This explains why it starts out as a male fantasy before turning into a twisted view of feminism. I say this because in the beginning, Reeves’ character Evan is the victim. He’s portrayed as a loyal husband, who kindly invites two young women into his home because they’re lost, it’s raining, and they need to call a cab. The women start flirting with him, and for a good portion of the film, he continually dodges their advances.

This is where the problems start. When the cab finally arrives, despite his every attempt at getting the women to leave, they force themselves on him. This almost immediately turns into consensual sex, but that doesn’t change the fact that this exchange began as rape with a male victim. This was my first problem.

The rest of the movie doesn’t get any better. From that point on, the plot becomes some twisted, torture plot; It becomes an attempt to punish Evan for his infidelity, as if the two women are feminist vigilantes. They make a mockery of female rape victims, victims of pedophilia and child molesters. They commit vandalism, torture, and manslaughter. It’s ridiculous. I thought it was disgusting. It seems more like a movie about feminism made by a person who hates feminism.

Even with all of these problems aside, the acting isn’t that great. As much as I like Keanu Reeves, this was definitely not the best role for him. I had a hard time believing him as a father to the children in the film, and unfortunately, his attempt at the emotional outbursts is somewhat laughable. The two women weren’t that bad in their portrayal of the horrible characters they were, but this was completely overshadowed by the degree of horrible for me.

I’m not surprised at all that this film came from the mind of Eli Roth. As I mentioned before, I definitely was not a fan, and I regret ever watching it. I feel sorry for the people that ended up watching it because of me in the first place. If you’re into torture movies, you might enjoy it, but even then, it doesn’t really hit its marks. It’s more infuriating than anything. I wouldn’t recommend it.

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