Netflix's Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight is a bloody good time for Halloween

Ian Sandwell
·4-min read
Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

From Digital Spy

Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight spoilers follow.

Netflix's crop of original horror movies this year hasn't quite matched up to the selection in 2019, but it's ending strongly just in time for Halloween.

With the brilliant His House to follow on Friday, Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight – dubbed Poland's first slasher movie – has arrived for anybody after some entertaining throwback thrills with lashings of blood and gore.

Set at an offline rehabilitation camp for technology-obsessed teens, the movie isn't shy about sticking to the tropes you'd expect from a slasher movie and if somebody told you it was a lost movie from the 1980s, you wouldn't be surprised.

That's a compliment as if you're going to adhere to convention, you better do it well and that's exactly what Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight does.

Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

It quickly sets up its batch of unsuspecting victims and hits every convention in the group, so yes, there's Zosia, a Final Girl haunted by an incident in her past, and Daniel, a jock who you'd put bets on being the first being killed, and so on.

Once this is out of the way, the movie starts to off them in a variety of inventive ways, keeping the kills coming at a steady pace to satisfy any gorehound, while also delivering knowing nods to its overt influences.

Taking a leaf from Scream's book, Julek – the geek of the cliched group – keeps warning them what not to do if they are to avoid the "six deadly sins" of horror movies, such as having sex, splitting up groups or "curiosity".

Naturally, they don't any attention to Julek.

The meta edge extends to the stereotypes that the characters fulfil. For some, they know they're conveying a cliche, such as the 'sexy blonde' Aniela and 'closeted gay' Bartek, as it's the only way for them to survive in life.

Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

It adds an unexpected freshness to Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight that isn't conveyed by the setup. This includes the technology-free setting because you can't be annoyed at them for just calling for help – they literally can't call for help as they don't have phones.

What's a shame is that this doesn't quite extend to another key aspect of the slasher movie: the killer. We're about to go into some spoilers for the ending, so look away now if you haven't seen it yet.

*SPOILERS START*

As expected, the teens are killed one-by-one until only Zosia survives to fulfil her Final Girl victory. It's revealed that there's not only one killer, but it's actually a pair of twins who were infected by some weird goo from a meteorite in their youth.

The twins were kept locked up in the basement by their mother for decades until she has an accident, leading to them killing her and managing to escape. While the space angle is different, the end result is still reminiscent of 'deformed people in the woods kill for no reason'.

Oh, and they eat human flesh, of course.

Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

Its origin might be different, but it still feels like an overused horror trope and you're hoping Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight delivers a fresh twist to it that never comes.

The movie might be an unashamed throwback to retro slasher movies, but as it showed with the other aspects of its homage, there are ways you can give it a modern edge – and a meteorite doesn't cut it.

Perhaps it's something that could be shown in a potential sequel as in classic slasher fashion, the movie ends by showing that both of the twins are still very much alive.

*SPOILERS OVER*

However, that's not enough to stop the movie from being a bloody good time for anyone after a new slasher fix this Halloween.

Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

It might be predictable and it might not be up there with the classics, but Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight knows exactly what it is, delivering gory deaths, meta gags and likeable characters (who will mostly die, sorry).

And really, what more can you ask for on Halloween?

Nobody Sleeps in the Woods Tonight is available to watch now on Netflix.

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