Spoilers want some birthday cake.
Some movies sound like typical run-of-the-mill late night fare until it turns out they have one thing out of the ordinary. Let’s cut right through the chase, it stars Nicholas Cage and that’s mostly what you need to know. It’s not going to be your favourite film, and I wouldn’t it consider it in the top list for a Cage fan either. I don’t know if you’re going to consider this a spoiler or not so I’ll wait to mention it, but let me just say you might want to read further before adding it to your watchlist.
Willy’s Wonderland (2021) was directed by Kevin Lewis based on a screenplay by G.O. Parsons. A lone driver (Nicholas Cage) runs into some car trouble and is forced to accept a job as a janitor to spend the night on a condemned venue called Willy’s Wonderland. Things go from bad to worse when the animatronics come alive with murderous intent. To add to the body count, some teenagers end up breaking in leaded by local rebel girl Liv (Emily Tosta) who wants to see the place burned down.
Okey, here’s the spoiler. This is Cage playing the most badass version of a janitor but don’t expect to compile any quotes from this performance. He doesn’t say a single word for the entire movie. He’s played the silent brooding type before, but he’s completely mute here. His character is watchable, and I think Cage’s character works as a silent type but at least a couple of lines or at the very least a quip at the very end would have worked wonders.
It’s not particularly bloody either since all antagonists are supposed to be animatronics. Visually it looks like Cage is punching some annoying furry characters. Tonally I get we’re going for horror comedy but it doesn’t quite land the concept. Even when real people are killed there’s zero scares and humour is a bit of a stretch, although I do have to say Cage gets the only really funny parts of the movie. Not laugh-out-loud barrel of laughs, just Cage being Cage. It also has the most annoying birthday song that you won’t be able to get out of your head, so you’ve been warned.
Lightly recommended for popcorn late night viewing. My main reservation is that I don’t believe it would attract horror or comedy audiences, but only hardcore Cage fans. A little extra gore and humour would’ve gone a long way as well as at least a couple of lines from the protagonist. Casual audiences that are not Cage fans, should stay clear. Worth a single watch and no more unless you’re going for a complete Cage collection.
That will do for now.