The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill

The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill
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The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill. Happy New Year everyone. And with the new year, comes a new twist at THiNC. Today, we are introducing The King of the Hill. As we watch new movies we will constantly be comparing them to the current king of the hill, and if we find a new movie that is better than the current THiNC. then we will announce our new king of the hill. Okay? Better yet, we’ll keep track of the movies that took a turn at the top of the hill – and at the end of the year, hopefully we’ll have a decent list of movies. And I’ll even create a right gutter (desktop, beneath the posts on mobile) widget keeping the list there. Fair enough? Problem with this idea? Today’s movie? Maybe, it just might, spend the entire year at the top of the hill! I mean, currently on Rotten Tomatoes it’s got a perfect audience score of 100%.

So, yeah – it goes without saying – The Innocents (De uskyldige) is a Norwegian film that has become our first King of the Hill. If you are unsure about watching this film, I have to just say this – trust me. The Innocents is stellar film-making. It’s Indie brilliance, it’s Norwegian Wood level of brilliance.

Before this movie started – I thought it was impossible to create an evil film that features child actors. I didn’t see it. Thought it was impossible. Didn’t think the acting could carry it. Didn’t think the adults making the film could throw the kids under this horror-bus. Eskil Vogt is actually known to us here at THiNC. He is the writer of the mind-job movie Thelma, which is also worth your time… but totally different that The Innocents. So let’s get to the spoilers, let’s talk about this one… so so good.

Explain The Movie The Innocents To Me!

Alright, so The Innocents is about Anna, who is autistic, and her sister, Ida, who have just moved to a new apartment complex. They meet another child who has a skin dysphoria, and her name is Aisha. And another child, a boy, named Benjamin. Early on, Benjamin and Ida meet, and Ida learns that Ben has some sort of ability to move things with his mind. His father is AWOL, and he has moved around a lot. Oh, and did I mention, he can move stuff around with his mind? Right. He can move stuff – with his mind. Meanwhile, Ida doesn’t see her sister as a human… she continuously does mean things to her. She pinches her, puts glass in her shoe. She just is really insensitive to her. Then comes Aisha, and contrary to Ida, Aisha cares deeply about Anna. Why? Well, because Aisha can hear Anna’s thoughts. You heard that right. Even though Anna is autistic, can’t speak, Aisha can communicate with her new friend telepathically. But Aisha’s home life, like Ben’s, is fairly bad. Her mother works all the time, and when she is home she’s basically catatonic. But we also learn that when the children are all together, their mental powers work better than when they are separate.

Let’s review:

Benjamin: can telepathically move things.
Aisha: can telepathically communicate with Ben and Anna.
Anna: can also communicate with her mind.
Ida: can do absolutely nothing.

Got it? Okay. We realize pretty early on that Ben isn’t all right in the head. He drops a cat from a very high stairwell, and ends up killing it. Later, as he continues to experiment with his powers, he learns he can break twigs, and trees, and then he progresses to snapping a kid’s leg in two. Like a very gross, compound fracture sort of break. But as the kids spend more and more time experimenting with their powers they all starting seeing things from each other’s lives. Pain. Blood. Injuries. They all draw the same fish symbol together. They are connecting more tightly, and more thoroughly, even when separated.

Somehow, Anna is being affected by these new powers. It’s knocking her out of her revery, and bringing her mentally forward. She tells Aisha that when the tree shard hit her and stuck into her leg, it felt like the tree was biting her, which Ida and Aisha thought was very funny, they all sort of laugh about it together. Ida is now beginning to see Anna like she’s a human being, as opposed to a non-entity. There’s really not a lot that is bad about these new mysterious powers for Ida.

Ben on the other hand… is spiraling. Always left to his own devices. Always choosing to do the wrong things with this new found power of his. But it makes sense, he spends most of the day frustrated, angry, and alone. But this kid is the epitome of dark. Ben goes so far with it that he starts sloshing around a boiling pot of water on the stove, burning his mother. When she starts yelling, he hits her in the head with a pot, knocking her unconscious on the floor. He then mentally pours out the pot of boiling water on his mother with his mind. The really eerie bit, was that Aisha’s mother, while the attack was occurring, began bleeding from her head… Aisha was concerned for her mother until she realized that it was actually Ben’s mother that was bleeding.

Later that evening, after seeing some teens he didn’t like, he began thumping on the floor, and started controlling the man that lives in the apartment below his. Ben sends the man out to find one of the teens, and has him attack the teen, killing him. As the news ripples throughout the apartment complex, all the parents start disallowing their kids from going out as a precautionary method. But Ben is exultant, he tells Ida that he is able to control people. Which is when he snaps another kid’s leg like a twig. This kid is spiraling big time. But when Ben turns on Aisha, and choking her, Ida knocks Ben down, stopping him from killing Aisha.

But ultimately, Ben wins the day when he takes over Aisha’s mother, and has her stab Aisha in the back, killing her. Her death has an enormous impact on Ida and even Anna. Their parents tell them that Aisha’s mother was crazy and alone. This was why she snapped. Not that it was Ben. They have no idea that their daughter’s improvements were a result of Aisha’s talking to their daughter telepathically. They really know nothing. (I have a theory about this detail… we’ll get to this later. Promise.) But Ida is done with Ben’s chaos. She’s going to act. So she takes her money, buys a glider model airplane, and coaxes Ben out to play. Ben? He’s excited. He’s all in. He doesn’t realize that it’s a ploy. And when he stands on the railing of the footbridge over the highway, she pushes him over the side. (Another woman sees her do it and is mortified.) And when she runs, Ida flips to a dark alternative version of the world:

The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill

And as she runs from the woman, and from the dark people chasing her in this upside down world, she is hit by a car. When she wakes in the hospital, her mother is mortified by what has happened and what she thinks that her daughter might have done. When Ida is released from the hospital, Anna leaves the apartment to go find Ben, to stop him once and for all. Ida, concerned for her sister, mentally breaks off her cast (this is the first indication that she has developed any powers at all) and heads out to the apartment complex’s lake.

Ben sends a mental wave at Anna – which we watch ripple its way towards Anna (really amazing CG – very understated special effects that lend themselves to this more psychological drama). Knocking Anna down. But she sends her own wave at Ben. But ultimately, it isn’t until Anna and Ida join forces, hold hands, and attack Ben that they are able to best him. And as the movie ends, we hear that the paramedics have come to the apartment complex, obviously because of Ben.

The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill

Thoughts on the Movie The Innocents

Look, the title is ironic. There is literally nothing about these children that is innocent. Nothing. These kids are as world weary and well traveled in the land of moral ambiguity as any parent. At first, the kids are all cute fun and games. These powers are just a curiosity that they all have fun playing with. It’s as if the mental games of normal children have come to life. It’s basically the movie Chronicle, but for children. Which means that this movie is in my wheelhouse. Why? Because it is a mental mindjob as we consider kids who are able to inflict very real world damage on one another. Why are they doing it? What is wrong with them? Hell, what is wrong with us?

I found the relationship between the two sisters really fascinating. We watch as, at first, Ida despises her incompetent, good for nothing sister. She hurts her intentionally, she puts glass in her shoe, she does terrible things to her. But as she starts to see that her sister has real emotions, real pains, and real feelings – all through her connection to Aisha – she starts to come to her sister’s defense. And after Ben kills Aisha, Ida knows that she has to do something to protect her sister… that Ben will kill Anna like he killed Aisha if given the chance. Which is why she pushed him off the bridge. She was only trying her best to protect her sister from Ben’s jealous rages. Anna was the only one left with the same kind of power as he had, and she knew that Ben would come for her eventually. And to see her go from a jerk to getting hit by a car in order to protect her sister, it’s a pretty amazing character arc we watched here.

Wait, Did Ida and Anna Kill Ben?

The ending of The Innocents is left up to our imagination. We know that Ben was critically injured there on the swing in the playground after their mental battle. We know that because the paramedics were called. But he could just as easily be dead as he could be seriously injured. Could another sequel be in the works by Eskil Vogt by keeping him alive? Maybe? I doubt it. But I’d totally be there for it if he did!

Theories to Explain The Innocents

Now, if we stop for a moment… we might realize there could be several different things going on here. The first is that what we see on the screen is literally happening. That these kids touched some sort of radioactive spider venom or something, and they are now able to telekinetically do these crazy things. That is one way to view this movie.

Another equally plausible explanation for this movie is that these kids are just trying to mentally make sense of a really hurtful and terrible world that they are all living in. Think about it. Aisha’s mother works several jobs, both day and night, leaving Aisha to her own devices most of the time. Similarly, Ben’s mother is always a horrible mother to her son. Could be that she has to be. But it also seems like she spends most of the day sleeping, or absent. Ben occasionally checks in on her, and she is rarely conscious. And when she is, Ben decides he’s going to kill her. But did he kill her for real, or only in his mind? Either way, he hates his mother and how she has abandoned him emotionally and physically. It’s as if the movie The Innocents tells the story of child-abandonment more so than anything else, and the telekinetic, pyschokinesis results that manifest.

Personal Thoughts on The Innocents

Eskil Vogt just created the 2022 response to the 80’s cliche child movies like Goonies, E.T., etc. Or heck Stranger Things even. The Innocents deals with real issues of abandonment, emotional paralysis, and psychologically impactful experiences like parents who are too busy for their children and the terrible results of these real world choices. I adored this movie. I loved the complexities of it. I found it dark, but passionate. Disturbing, and yet hopeful. I was transfixed by Ida’s growth as a friend to her autistic sister. And encouraged by the ending as the duo overcame this evil together.

So Let’s Hear it for The Innocents Movie 2022 New King of the Hill

Edited by: CY