FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S is a new horror movie based on a video game. Those can always be hit or miss. This one ends up being both. As a result, the overall experience isn’t as impressive as it could have been. Find it in theaters and on Peacock now. Read our Five Nights at Freddy’s movie review here!
FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S is a horror movie out in theaters and on Peacock. The movie is based on the video game of the same name. Not one I am familiar with, so I am watching this as any other “stand-alone” movie. While it does start out very strong, the ending is ultimately very predictable and not that interesting. Well, not to me, anyway.
Also, the small attempts at creating a fun moment fall desperately flat. It feels like catering to younger viewers, but this is not a movie for kids. These movies that seem to be set up as cute and funny could’ve had a real impact, if we had seen the main character react in a way that shows us it’s quite the opposite.
Continue reading our Five Nights at Freddy’s movie review below. Find it in theaters and on Peacock from October 27, 2023.
A simple premise with a dark story
In Five Nights at Freddy’s, we follow a troubled security guard, Mike (Josh Hutcherson). He is responsible for his little sister, Abby, which means he’s essentially a parent. Money is tight and he cannot hold down a job for long. Something also happens because he can’t control himself. Having seen his little brother get taken when he was just 12 years old, means he reacts far too quickly now.
As “luck” would have it, he gets a job working at Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza. The pay is bad and the hours are worse. However, with an eviction notice – and an aunt (Mary Stuart Masterson) threatening to take him to court to get custody of Abby – he doesn’t have much of a choice.
Already on his very first night on the job, Mike comes to realize that the night shift at Freddy’s won’t be that easy. Huge animatronic animals seem to come to life, and they get quite brutal. This, however, is just one element of the story. Underneath it all is a much more brutal story that feels like something out of a true crime documentary.
The ending of Five Nights at Freddy’s is a letdown
As already mentioned, the core story of Five Nights at Freddy’s is actually very dark. The groundwork for this is laid in the first act, which is definitely the strongest for me. The middle part is also okay, while the final act is messy. And so very predictable. Also, so many details of the story are never covered.
Not least when it comes to the future of siblings, Mike and Abby, who were about to get evicted. Something that is never touched upon again, as if it simply goes away despite Mike still struggling to earn a decent wage.
Apart from Josh Hutcherson (Ultraman, The Hunger Games franchise) in the lead, we see Elizabeth Lail (You), Piper Rubio, Kat Conner Sterling (We Have a Ghost, 9-1-1), and Mary Stuart Masterson (Fried Green Tomatoes) in key roles. Mary Stuart Masterson’s character, The Aunt, does feel like a caricature. She’s certainly no bee charmer in this one! That’s not the actor’s fault, but due to the role.
Also, Matthew Lillard (Scream) shows up early in a key role.
And, let’s be honest, we all know Matthew Lillard wasn’t cast to have such a simple and small role. That casting in itself is a huge spoiler!
Watch Five Nights at Freddy’s on Peacock or in theaters now!
Five Nights at Freddy’s is directed by Emma Tammi (The Wind), and while I could sense her style in the beginning, I definitely could not towards the end. At times, it almost feels like two movies with the final act being too different from that stronger opening act. As a whole, I definitely feel that Willy’s Wonderland was a more accomplished movie.
The two movies are extremely similar in plot, but the style of Willy’s Wonderland is simply more consistent, which makes for a better overall movie-watching experience. And yes, I do know the horror game phenomenon came first, which means Five Nights at Freddy’s is the original. This only makes it more sad that it wasn’t adapted better.
Five Nights at Freddy’s comes from horror producer Blumhouse, who also gave us M3GAN, The Black Phone, and The Invisible Man. Of those three, this begins with the darkness of the two latter but ultimately feels more like a M3GAN. And yes, this does still mean you should check it out, but I would go for the Peacock home theater experience.
Five Nights at Freddy’s is in theaters and on Peacock from October 27, 2023.
In Theaters: October 27, 2023
Streaming: October 27, 2023 on Peacock
Director: Emma Tammi
Writers: Scott Cawthon, Emma Tammi, Seth Cuddeback
Cast: Josh Hutcherson, Elizabeth Lail, Kat Conner Sterling, Piper Rubio, Mary Stuart Masterson, Matthew Lillard
Five Nights at Freddy’s follows a troubled security guard as he begins working at Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza. While spending his first night on the job, he realizes the night shift at Freddy’s won’t be so easy to make it through.