The Guardian (1990) ~ Review by Chris

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The Guardian

Tonight, while the world is asleep… an ancient evil is about to awaken.

Directed by William Friedkin

Very interesting film. A couple with a baby hire a live-in nanny who they definitely shouldn’t have. It’s made clear from the start that there’s something supernatural going on and that the nanny is a big part of it. I’d describe the story as being like a dark fairy tale but in everyday surroundings. I thought Jenny Seagrove was excellent as the nanny and the rest of the cast were fine. It’s a very well-made film with some decent gore and great imagery. It succeeds in never being boring as you wonder what could possibly be around the next corner, well I did anyway. It’s pretty off the wall but more importantly, I feel, is that its uniqueness is delivered with aplomb. I also really liked the conclusion which I thought was on a par with the rest, no disappointment at all. Friedkin, in my opinion, is the director of the greatest horror film ever made, The Exorcist, although according to the extras he doesn’t personally consider The Exorcist as a horror film but a film based on a real case with horror elements, interesting, I can dig that. He also describes Psycho as, “possibly the most disturbing film I’ve ever seen”, not a point related to this film but to Friedkin himself; I thought it was worth mentioning. If you haven’t seen this film, I highly recommend it. It was a quick 90 minutes and I can’t wait to watch it again. Jenny Seagrove, in another interview, says “..it was good fun but it certainly wasn’t a William Friedkin classic..” Well, if you take The Exorcist and so on into account, maybe not, but it’s still a lot better than most of the shit I find myself watching sometimes and when I sat down to watch this I had no delusions that it would be as good as The Exorcist, who the fuck would? Anyway, people say similar things about Argento’s later films, Romero’s ‘..of the Dead’ films of recent years too, but I don’t pay such comments any mind, my usual feelings about such remarks is, ‘well you go and make a film then, let’s see how great you are’. This is up there in the films that are well worth catching category so go and check it out. I’m not a huge Friedkin fan but he made The Exorcist and he might choose to make other kinds of films usually but he knows how to make a decent horror film, when it suits him, and this is one of those times.

TheGuardian(1)