Barbarian Parent Guide
If you're squeamish or anxious, this terrifying gore-fest is not the film for you.
Parent Movie Review
When Tess (Georgina Campbell) lands an interview for her dream job, she rushes to book a place to stay overnight. With a big medical conference filling up the hotels, she finds herself staying in a shady Airbnb well off the beaten path in a dangerous part of Detroit. Even worse, when she arrives in the pouring rain, she finds that the house has been double-booked, and is already occupied by Keith (Bill Skarsgard). Although suspicious, Tess eventually agrees to share the home, and Keith does seem to be a pretty normal guy. The house, on the other hand, has some deep, dark, and downright horrifying secrets…secrets that Tess is going to discover whether she likes it or not. And she’s not going to like it.
Odds are, neither are you. If you’re squeamish, nervous, or just generally anxious, this is a terrible movie for you. That’s because it is excellent at its job. This is a horror flick, after all, and it is trying to horrify you. The film is brutally tense, with enough breaks for relative levity that when it dives back into the more unpleasant scenes, it feels even worse. If they just left the tension at maximum, sooner or later the audience would acclimate and boredom would set in. By jostling you back to reality just long enough to relax, the writers can drag out a chronic case of the heebie-jeebies for most of the runtime. It’s a masterclass in making you feel bad.
The story works well largely because Tess, despite her inability to make a rational decision to literally save her life, is a very sympathetic character. She’s an earnest and generous person, doing her best with an unbelievably terrible situation, and is well played by Georgina Campbell.
Charming performances aside, this is not a film for younger viewers. There are over 100 profanities in the script, disturbing references to sexual violence and incest, plus serial murder and abduction, and an unholy amount of nauseatingly creative on-screen violence. The filmmakers made a solid investment in some fake heads, which they promptly destroy on camera in a valiant attempt to make the audience dry-heave – or, in the case of one of my fellow movie-goers, giggle hysterically and then sneeze. For those of you with an iron stomach and a taste for the seriously macabre, this is going to be just what you were looking for as autumn sets in. As horror fans know, once you feel that chill in the air, it’s time to scare yourself silly. And boy, does this fit the bill.Directed by Zach Cregger. Starring Georgina Campbell, Bill Skarsgård, Justin Long. Running time: 102 minutes. Theatrical release September 9, 2022. Updated September 9, 2022
Rating & Content Info
Why is Barbarian rated R? Barbarian is rated R by the MPAA for some strong violence and gore, disturbing material, language throughout and nudity.
Violence: A bloody handprint is seen. A character’s head is bashed into a wall until it is unrecognizable. A person commits suicide with a handgun. Another character is shot in the abdomen. A man’s arm is torn off and used to beat him to death. A character’s eyes are gouged out, and the socket is used to tear his head apart. An individual is shot in the head.
Sexual Content: There are references to rape and incest. A character is accused of sexual assault. Individuals, including unwilling adults, are seen breastfeeding. A female character is always seen nude, with both rear and frontal views.
Profanity: There are 87 sexual expletives, 21 scatological terms, and frequent uses of mild curses and terms of deity. There is one use of a homophobic slur.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adults are briefly seen drinking wine socially.
Page last updated September 9, 2022
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The same premise – a double booked online rental – takes a romantic/comic twist in Love in the Villa.