<script async src="//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js"></script> <!-- Showbiz Portal Bottom 1 300x250, created 10/15/10 --> <ins class="adsbygoogle" style="display:inline-block;width:300px;height:250px" data-ad-client="ca-pub-1272644781333770" data-ad-slot="2530175011"></ins> <script> (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); </script>
Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Aug 25, 2023



‘COBWEB’ is a mystery-horror flick that is the directorial debut of Samuel Bodin. It starts promisingly. An 8-year old boy, 

Peter (Woody Norman), is bullied in school where he has no friends and just keeps to himself. 

His parents, Carol (Lizzy Caplan, star of the TV series remake of “Fatal Attraction”) and Mark (Anthony Starr of “The Boys”), don’t want him to go out and forbid him to do trick or treat on Halloween Night. 

One night, Peter hears someone knocking on his bedroom wall. 

He wakes up his parents, but they tell him he is probably just dreaming or imagining the knocks. 

But the knocking persists and when he knocks back, whoever is behind the wall also knocks again to answer him.

Later on, he also hears the voice of a girl who introduces herself as Sarah. 

In school, his teacher Miss Devine (Cleopatra Coleman) notices that he doesn’t even go out during recess and becomes more concerned when he draws a picture of a girl asking for help inside a black room. 

Miss Devine then goes to his home to personally tell his parents that Peter might need help, but her mom tells the teacher to leave and reprimands Peter for talking to her. 

In school, a classmate who bullies Peter all the time wrecks the pumpkin he painted as a jack-o-lantern. 

Sarah tells Peter to stand up for himself and he pushes the bully down the stairs, breaking his leg.

For this, Peter is expelled from school and his parents punish him by locking him down in their basement. 

While he is imprisoned down there, Peter discovers some dark family secret, which, of course, we cannot reveal here as it will be a big spoiler. 

The movie succeeds in making us completely sympathize with Peter. What he experiences is really frightening, specially for a child. 

At first, we think he’s going through a scary supernatural experience, but later on, like him, we also start suspecting that his parents are hiding a terrible secret from him and we start to mistrust them.

The movie will remind you of other horror flicks where appearances can indeed be very deceiving and dark secrets hide beneath the surface, like “Barbarian” where a monster turns out to be lurking in the basement, and “Basket Case”, about conjoined twins that became a cult classic and had two sequels.

The film’s strength lies in the foreboding atmosphere of danger and the underlying feeling of fright faced by the boy. This keeps us viewers engaged. 

We wonder if the knocking comes from a supernatural source or if the parents of Peter are just desperately hiding something behind the walls. 

We all wait for the big reveal as to what the secret is.

The movie’s best part is the setting up of the mysterious goings on as viewers have no idea of what really is happening to the boy. 

as the narrative goes on, the script fails to fully deliver a proper and convincing solution that woud fit all the tense build up that comes before it. 

The ending leaves a lot of unanswered questions and doesn’t give a proper, definitive closure . It looks like it is just more interested in setting up a sequel.

But the movie benefits from strong performances by the cast, specially the child actor, Woody Norman, who is very believable as the harassed young hero, from whose perspective the movie unfolds. 

And we like it that the school bully and his vengeful relatives get the comeuppance that they deserve when they stormed Peter’s house to hurt him, without any inkling that they will be facing a very formidable opponent that can single handedly mangle them all to death, to increase the film’s body count.

Caplan and Starr are persuasively shifty and batty as the secretive parents and Coleman is also effective as the concerned teacher who even shows Peter how to save a spider that got inside their classroom.

The use of the spider here is really very appropriate for the movie.