My mother always told me never to go to bed angry. But, after seeing this film, I honestly couldn’t listen to her. With the delivery of the barely passable plot looking at the audience and then slapping every single viewer in the face in the last 15-minutes of the movie.
The Turning follows Kate, a teacher with a rough family situation, hired as a private teacher for a little girl in her mansion estate. She soon finds that the situation is far direr once the brother (played by Finn Wolfhard) returns home and things take a turn for the supernatural.
The only thing that I could give praise too is the acting from Finn Wolfhard and Brooklyn Prince as the kid actors of the film. Their sense of charisma and delivery of each action is continuously entertaining to watch and is the only interesting thing in this film. Their brother-sister relationship seems to be the only real thing in this entire picture.
Now the bad news. The pacing in the movie takes the plot from semi-interesting and brings it to a snail’s pace. If this time was used to give better characterization or further the lore of the story, it would have been manageable. However, it continues to return to the weaker aspects of the film (whether there’s a ghost in the house) and adds days to the story that don’t have anything special happen in them. It just keeps showing a dead woman in a wedding dress and thinks it is the scariest thing in the entire world.
Good films that extend past a three-hour runtime tend to have slow paces, however, this is usually followed by a decent payoff for the viewer, a reward for being so patient. The Turning decides to punish the audience by deciding to change from a survival story to a psychological thriller, before finally ending as a message about hereditary conditions in the last 15 minutes of the movie. Then it just rolls credits, with no concern at all about any answers to the countless questions it asks you throughout the film. It’s like if the last season of Lost turned into The Bachelor with the final episode being an episode of Grey’s Anatomy. Sounds stupid, right? Well, so is The Turning.
The Turning is a muddled mess that states a strong message to only abandon that message, all while wasting the talents of some great child actors where they should have paid for a better scriptwriter.