IFC Midnight’s “We Need To Do Something” Is a Wild & Grotesque Ride [Review]

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE YET TO SEE WE NEED TO DO SOMETHING, THIS IS A NON-SPOILER REVIEW.

We Need to Do Something, based upon Max Booth III’s book of the same name… Is another of this year’s horror films that is filmed nearly entirely in one location: a bathroom.  And while some of these other bare-bones movies felt very limited in their approach, this crazy psycho-horror packs all of the punch and the bite that you could ask for in a midnight movie.  The small-space camerawork in this movie, done by Shane Patrick Ford, is miraculous in that it makes this one location feel endless in its expansiveness.  There was not a single moment that I felt tired of this space, as the claustrophobia added a tension and anxiety that was impossible to shake.

WHAT IS WE NEED TO DO SOMETHING ALL ABOUT?

JOHN JAMES CRONIN, PAT HEALY, SIERRA McCORMICK, and VINESSA SHAW in We Need To Do Something.

The film follows Melissa and her family as they seek shelter from a storm. Unfortunately, they become trapped in their bathroom,  with no sign of rescue. Hours turn to days and Melissa comes to realize that she and her girlfriend Amy might have something to do with the horrors that threaten to tear her family– and the entire world, apart.

Even though there have been many films similar to that of We Need to Do Something, with a small group of people trapped in a space while post-apocalyptic shenanigans happen outside the safety of the four walls… 10 Cloverfield Lane comes to mind.  No movie has done it quite like this one.

HOW IS THE CAST?

SIERRA McCORMICK in We Need To Do Something. Courtesy of IFC Midnight.

The cast is all uniformly excellent, although I do think that each performer is almost acting on a different level.  But, that also has to do with their wildly different characterizations. It makes you wonder how they ever existed in the same household before this catastrophic event. Pat Healy, as the alcoholic abusive father, is outrageously manic and his outbursts only add to the uneasiness of the movie.  The always-excellent Vinessa Shaw, is much more grounded in her approach as the matriarch and is really the only character you feel like you can trust to make any sort of rational decision.

John James Cronin as the young Bobby, is the innocent of the group who is put through absolute hell.  And lastly, Sierra McCormick as Melissa, our lead, teeters on the edge of you hating her one second and then all of a sudden feeling empathetic for her, the next.  The psychological warfare that happens amongst this family is almost more anxiety-inducing than what happens

HOW SHOCKING IS WE NEED TO DO SOMETHING?

Pretty much throughout the entire movie, my mouth was agape in shock, horror and disgust.  As the film begins to unravel, these insane moments keep getting thrown at you, barely letting you catch a breath until they release another shocker.  Some of these bits I cannot unsee, even though I most certainly would like to. Just be prepared to buckle yourself in for a wild, disgusting ride, and its probably best you don’t eat a big meal before you take this journey.

DOES THE END COME TOGETHER IN A SATISFYING WAY?

One thing I must say though… is that Sean King O’Grady’s film does not pull itself together in the end.  The meaning behind all of this madness is unclear, and really up to you, if you want to look deeper into finding an allegorical significance or not.  I am truly conflicted with this movie because there are a lot of flaws here, including the fact that I don’t think the film really knows exactly what it wants to be.  A supernatural horror film, a teen-witch thriller ala The Craft, a schlocky grindhouse flick, a psychological family drama… there’s a lot going on here and not all of it works.  But, when it does work, it is operating a whole nother level.

We Need To Do Something is In Theaters and on VOD now.

For more on horror, check out our month-long horror marathon, THS Fright-A-Thon, or stay tuned to That Hashtag Show.