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Film Review: Evil Nanny (2016)

SYNOPSIS:

A couple hires a live-in nanny to watch their son while they work.  At first, everything goes perfectly, but when an unsafe incident means the parents no longer want the nanny around, they find out this nanny is savvy at not being evicted from her live-in situation.

REVIEW:

Born in New York, Evil Nanny’s director Jared Cohn is an avid writer and director. Jared graduated NYIT with a B.F.A in communication arts.  Jared works in production and continues to hone his craft as an actor and filmmaker.

I’ve seen a couple of films with similar plotlines, but Evil Nanny is a bit over the top as far as showing just how far Jen (Lindsay Elston) will go to get what she wants. The film claims to be based on true events and doesn’t waste any time letting us know that Jen is bad news. She is kicked out of a home for wayward girls, and immediately burns it to the ground.  She has a secret which led to her being asked to leave the girls’ home.  Jen plans to try and get a job as a nanny, despite her questionable, hidden past.

Fay (Nicole Sterling) and Tim (Matthew Pohlkamp) are married and have a son. They have been struggling to juggle parenthood with their busy work schedules. They have just moved into Fay’s grandmother’s house and are in the process of interviewing potential nannies when they meet Jen and decide to hire her to be a live-in nanny to manage things around the house and also care for their young son Allan (Cooper Fontaine). Although this is a low budget film, the acting from Lindsay Elston as Jen is notable. The editing and cinematography are also pretty well done in this film.

Jen seems bubbly and outgoing and immediately gets along well with Allan. Fay’s grandmother had a large house and they give Jen a private bedroom and bathroom in the lower section of the house. When Jen goes grocery shopping with Fay a girl who is a cashier recognizes her and calls her Alexa.  Jen pretends she doesn’t know the girl and tells her she has the wrong person until Fay isn’t around and then Jen threatens the girl if she says anything.  Obviously the girl knows Jen from her past life and also knows Jen’s diabolical secret.  Lindsay Elston is very believable portraying Jen as a dangerous girl trying to hide her dark past by switching between personalities. One minute she’s friendly and wholesome and the next minute she’s acting like a crazed serial killer.

I found it odd that Fay and Tim don’t really seem very concerned about their son. They are distracted by work obligations, and this gives Jen free rein over the household.  Personally, I’d be at least a little concerned about a stranger making themselves so at home in my own house.  Jen begins having wild parties in her part of the house and when Fay and Tim discover this, they try to fire Jen and ask her to leave. The police are called and they tell the couple that they have to give Jen 30 days to vacate the house. A legal battle ensues and this is when things get really out of control and Jen’s behavior becomes more and more outrageous. She starts dating a drug dealer and drinking heavily. Fay and Tim finally get a judge to grant them an eviction to get rid of Jen, but she has found a loophole and stops the proceedings and is allowed to stay in the house.

By this point, I felt that the story was getting ridiculous. Fay goes grocery shopping and sees the cashier that knows Jen and notices she has the same tattoo as Jen. The cashier doesn’t want to answer any of Fay’s questions, but tells her that if she talks to her Jen/Alexa will kill her. Nicole Sterling wasn’t very convincing as a distraught Fay, which I found disappointing. She was just no match for the murderous Jen.

I thought that this movie had potential as a thriller, but overall the story fell flat and other than Lindsay Elston, a lot of the acting just wasn’t believable.

Evil Nanny –  2 out of 5 Skulls

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