Parents' Guide to

Come Play

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Empathy, family, and autism in scary monster story.

Movie PG-13 2020 96 minutes
Come Play Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 11+

Didn't find it too scary

I found the movie not too scary, and it was fine for younger tweens. Yes, there are some monsters and mild jumps cares, but there's no blood or gore. Would recommend for tweens
age 10+

Great movie - too scary for younger kids

My 8 and 7 year olds love scary movies for their age. They saw this and were begging to watch so we all watched together and I’m telling any other parent who thinks their kids are mature and love scary movies that this will scare your children for months!!! Don’t let them watch. It is a GREAT movie but too scary for 10 and under.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11 ):
Kids say (17 ):

Despite small hiccups in plot and character, this teen-friendly horror movie is a well-made production from top to bottom, and it effectively encourages strong empathy for its central characters. Written and directed by Jacob Chase, who adapted his own five-minute short film to feature length, Come Play resembles The Babadook in many ways, but it doesn't quite reach that film's league. It sometimes clouds the rules behind Larry; in one scene, Oliver smashes the lights in his room and causes Larry to fizzle out, even though Larry seems to have the power to douse the lights himself when he arrives. It also rushes friendships between Oliver and three other boys who start out by bullying him. But the dynamic between the family of three makes up for these things.

Young Robertson is remarkable as Oliver, while Jacobs' Sarah spends the most time with him and is tested by the impact of his autism. Her impatience leads to rash decisions, which drives the story. Meanwhile, Gallagher's Marty frequently works -- a night shift in a little booth in the center of a parking lot, a nice touch -- and gets to be the "fun" one at home. Come Play is bold enough to illustrate the strain in the family members' relationships, humanizing them. And it has a strong, vivid look that recalls the suburban habitats of E.T. and Poltergeist (Steven Spielberg's Amblin was one of the production companies). It also boasts tight, precise editing by Gregory Plotkin (Get Out), a chilling score by Roque Banos (Evil Dead), and a smart sound design, with Larry's slow, clicking footsteps an especially effective touch.

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