Two movies came out within a year of each other about a boy trying to defend himself from his psychotic babysitter. Which film does the concept better?
The Babysitter is an exploitation comedy while Emilie is a serious horror thriller.
After watching the two back to back, there is a lot of overlap in plot progression. The protagonist is a boy just on the cusp of teenhood and is outgrowing the need for a babysitter and growing more attracted to her.
The biggest difference between the two films is that in Emilie, Anna is taking care of three children and in The Babysitter, Bee invites over five teenagers. Emilie is grounded, realistic, and grey toned. The Babysitter is stylized, hyperbolic, and color-saturated.
I am a lover of highly stylized movies, but live-action cartoons only work if they’re really funny. The Babysitter tries to be a stylish horror comedy but it’s just not funny or scary enough. I love the editing techniques but the movie’s style doesn’t make up for the lack of substance. The characters feel like cardboard stereotypes rather than humorous caricatures. A TV series like Scream Queens did a better job at mixing camp with horror.
Emilie is the superior of the two films. There is a perverse pleasure in watching Anna do all the things you should never do while babysitting children. The characters are real enough that I did fear for the kids. Anna, who is later revealed to be Emilie, is properly motivated and sympathetic. I didn’t want her to win, but I did want to see what horrid thing she did next. Emilie is also smart enough that it’s more of a battle of wits between her and the kids as apposed to an R-rated Home Alone.
The Babysitter has some fun moments but Emilie is the true horror film.