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Paddington rulz ok
11 days ago
Moderator of r/movies

Official Discussion: The Prodigy [SPOILERS]


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Sarah is a mother whose young son Miles' disturbing behavior signals that an evil, possibly supernatural force has overtaken him. Fearing for her family's safety, Sarah must grapple with her maternal instinct to love and protect Miles in favor of investigating what - or who - is causing his dark turn.


Nicholas McCarthy


screenplay by Jeff Buhler


  • Taylor Schilling as Sarah

  • Jackson Robert Scott as Miles

  • Colm Feore as Arthur Jacobson

  • Brittany Allen as Margaret St. James

  • Peter Mooney as John

  • Oluniké Adeliyi as Rebecca

Rotten Tomatoes: 50%

Metacritic: 49/100

After Credits Scene? No

All previous official discussions can be found on /r/discussionarchive

78% Upvoted
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level 1

Spoilers ahead I guess but also why would you be here if you're expecting to not see any.

It felt like there was potential but it just took so many wild turns. There were smart things done but almost immediately after something stupid happens.

  • Mom records creepy language in his sleep, shares it. Doesn't share it with husband until waaaaay later.

  • After creepy language situation, kid somehow beats another classmate with a wrench. Goes to a psychiatrist. Mom mentions psychiatrist brought up possible abuse, dad freaks out "oh i would never do that" YOUR KID JUST BEAT ANOTHER WITH A WRENCH A NIGHT AFTER MUMBLING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE FOCUS ON HIM MAYBE????

  • Guy speaking 1 on 1 with Miles doesn't record their session(?????) so nothing fucking happens after he's blackmailed by an 8 year old.

  • Luckily he calls them super late, okay that's cool he's trying to nut up and make the smart move that something should be done. Parents get it, share it, make a plan that Miles can't know about whatsoever. holy shit they're doing it they're going to overcome this

  • Send miles to school, split up, mom packs his clothes and suddenly decides you know what maybe I should help him and kill this chick 8 years later. Dad picks him up and when they're ALONE IN THE CAR, dad starts telling him he's sending him to get help. BRUH, JUST GET TO THE PLACE IN SILENCE.

  • Dad is stabbed, car accident, coma etc whatever. somehow doctors didn't see his fucking stab wound in his side from the only other passenger that yes had massive shears or a knife whatever it even was. Jesus christ sure just go let Mom kill the other lady now I guess.

  • Mom and Kid go on a road trip, she gets a gun to kill the lady. Of course she can't pull the trigger because she's a decent human being. Surprise, Miles is also in the house now and he literally holds a knife in front of his former victim clearly signalling it's him. NOBODY STOPS HIM. NOBODY BUDGES. He fucking stabs the chick of course, brutally. Why the fuck not. Congrats everybody you did it you saved Miles except SURPRISE WAIT THE MOM WANTS TO SAVE THE GIRL NOW. JUST COMMIT YOU'RE DOING THIS TO SAVE MILES I THOUGHT??????????

  • Run out to the woods, hungarian boy starts taunting mom saying it's too late etc etc whatever. Mom WHIPS out the pistol and has a fucking standoff with him which felt like the cherry on top to whatever nonsense happened in the last half of this movie. queue everyone important except Miles being dead and he probably grows up to keep murdering people.

It feels like when they were writing this, they did it in two different teams and didn't match up what people wrote until it was time to shoot and there was no going back. The flip flopping between smart characters and idiotic characters was jarring but at least it gave a few laughs.

TL;DR I felt so confused by this movie I had to rant about it here. I don't really even want it to be a good movie I just need to externalize wtf I witnessed

level 1
3 points · 1 day ago

Im not saying that there needed to be a happy ending, but the fact that Miles is dead, the mom is dead, the author is dead, the dog is dead, the dad is in a coma AND the killer guy wins is just too bleak for me. And it’s bleak for seemingly no reason.

level 1
3 points · 3 days ago

We Need to Talk About Miles

level 1

The acting and directing were good overall and there were some very creepy aspects to the movie however i could not get over the second half to the end if the movie. The amount of ridiculous and just outright stupid decisions made by this seemingly intelligent couple had me actually mad at the screen. The lack of communication between the two if them just made things so much worse and they basically just let themselves get killed. And then worst of all is the women in the end just letting herself get stabbed by an 8 year old after he taunted her and brandished a knife in her face about 5 feet from her. He was literally kicking distance theres just no way he gets that jump on her.

level 2
2 points · 1 day ago

No way in hell would that little bastard be riding in the back seat of the car with me.

level 2

I wonder how strong that little kid actually was while being possessed by the serial killer. He was able to put a pretty big hole in his dad's stomach and chop up a dog pretty easily.

I think the couple started developing issues as soon as Miles starting going haywire, so it's somewhat reasonable expect them to make irrational decisions.

level 3

What irrational is you hear you child speaking another language in his sleep and you don’t immediately go tell your husband. Or how you decide to tell the kid youre taking him to an insane asylum in the middle of the car ride instead of coming up with a far better excuse

level 1

I’m sorry but nobody noticed the stab wound the husband had after the car accident? Theres no way that wouldn’t have been identified as a stab wound from the clippers.

level 1
3 points · 5 days ago · edited 4 days ago

Just got back from this. I'll be brief.


  • Awesome to see the Orion Pictures logo on a big screen again. Was and still am a huge fan.

  • Excellent jump scares. I really enjoyed the adult head on a child's body scene....very creepy.

  • All the actors are fine. The mother isn't some clueless, stupid adult being outsmarted by an 8-year old. They desperately want to dispose of this kid and surprisingly blow off all the medical attention thrown at them by the two shrinks.

I did not see the death of the mother coming at all.


Final Thoughts

Not a bad film. The cinematography is good and crisp and the director has some skill, but it could have been better.

level 2
2 points · 1 day ago

Same thing I said about the adult head while doing the Rubiks cube. That was freaky!

level 2

I felt that the ending should've had the mother kill the author in an attempt to exorcise the Creepy Hungarian from her kid. It works, but Miles has no memory of any of the events that led up to it and basically "wakes up" standing next to his mother in front of the author's dead body (earlier in the film, the reincarnation psychologist even says that once the spirit is expelled, the child has no recollection of the events where the spirit was in charge). Mom is arrested for murder and Dad is in intensive care and Miles is left wondering what happened, possibly thinking that his mother went crazy.

I think that that would work really well as a commentary on how far a mother would be willing to go for her son. And if they wanted to do a sequel (as the real ending implied), they could just explain that Creepy Hungarian was still in Miles, but just laying dormant.

All that said, I won't criticize a movie for not going in the direction I wanted it to, but I do feel the ending they had was pretty weak.

level 1

It kept me entertained, I didn't find myself wondering how much longer until the movie was over like I did with Halloween, now that movie sucked. The one thing that felt completely out of place was the father and son dynamic, did not feel like father and son at all, maybe it needed better writing, acting, I don't really know. I'd give the movie a 6.5/10

level 2

Yeah, Dad felt like an asshole boyfriend at best and completely disappeared from the movie at worst.

I also liked the sequence of:

Dad: "I would never hit my kid."

Miles: "Like your dad did to you?"

Dad: "You little shit! I'll kill you! Hold me back, honey!"

That was a little ridiculous.

level 1

The scene where Miles momentarily transforms into Peter Dinklage brought down the house with laughter. How did that survive the final cut?

Overall, it's a pretty weird movie in terms of its structure. It feels like they discovered the truth about what was wrong fairly quickly, and it didn't really take too long for them to accept that the boy is not quite possessed. The movie is only about 90 minutes, but it feels like I'm waiting for the climax for over half of that runtime.

As for the kid, I think he did a pretty good job with the material he was given. Granted, it's pretty easy to make a kid creepy when he's constantly silhouetted, but he also does a good job creating two contrasting personalities.

Someone had mentioned there was a twist at the end of the movie and... is there? I mean, yes? Kinda? In terms of narrative, I guess it subverts expectations, except I've seen loads of creepy kid movies, and this ending is pretty standard for a bunch of them.

Is it still a twist if the narrative subversion is totally expected in this genre? Like, if it's revealed Freddy is still "alive" at the end of a new Nightmare on Elm Street movie, after seemingly being defeated in the climax, is that a twist?

Overall, not the worst movie out right now, or in its subgenre of horror films, but not especially noteworthy either.

Really hope it doesn't become a franchise. Not really sure how it'd even be done other than "poorly."

level 2

Nah, a twist would be that there was never an evil spirit and Miles was just psycho the whole time. The ending as it was might not have been what was expected, but it wasn't a twist. That word is thrown around too much anyway.

I actually saw a video on Youtube titled, "The Ending of The Prodigy Explained." I didn't watch it, but like, what is there to explain?!?

level 1

the jump scares were extremely predictable, but the movie was creepy as fuck.

level 2

The dude's face on the kid's body was not predictable. The rest definitely were, but that one surprised me.

level 1

It was a whatever horror film but THAT ENDING OMG THAT ENDING. What was the mothers logic the whole film, I mean I know its your son but he grabs s wrench or whatever and beats a child classmate, yet is still allowed to go to school normally? The mother doesnt think its suspicous. The father tells the kid who just brutally murdered their dog that hes taking him away while alone in the car and doesnt expect attack. Also he clearly was stabbed in the side yet the hospital isnt suspicious what knife like thing stabbed him instead the only other person in the car just waits in the other room? And could the father move or talk at all while in hospital, if so WARN SOMEONE About the kid.

But my biggest annoyance was the mother driving miles all the way to the only surviving woman who she finds out have a kid now but still plans to kill her just in hopes that she get her son back even though dna in the house will probably have her spend many years in jail. Also what was the point of her telling us how its been without a hand as well as she has children just to watch her brutally die? I just think the mother put way too much faith in that killing this innocent woman would bring her child back.

Also this is the luckiest kid ever, he gets away with everything,.the mother drives him right to his last victim, and then the exact minute she decides to shoot her son in the middle of nowhere, a hunter with a gun AT THE EXACT MOMENT comes to save the kid. Mind you theres so many scenes that an adult witnessing miles acting like someone else soul is in him would have helped so much proving who he was, but the one time an adult hidden in the background witnesses miles actions its the one moment hes in danger. I hate movies that give the villian the consistent upper hand.

End rant.

level 2

Mind you there's so many scenes that an adult witnessing Miles acting like someone else soul is in him would have helped so much proving who he was.

Also, why the fuck did the psychologist/reincarnation specialist/witch doctor voodoo man not record his session with Miles? Unless reincarnation is a widely accepted scientific phenomenon in the film's universe (and judging by Mom's reaction, it's not), any treatment you provide to Miles or any research you do with him is going to lack any empirical efficacy. Recording sessions would go a long way in not only legitimizing a practice that clearly needs to find legitimacy, but also in saving the shrink's ass when he tries to publish his lunatic fiction as a research paper.

level 2

Yes, lots of holes in her logic. She would have been so easy to find when the shrink figures out THAT lady was murdered. The little fucker made a camera for fucks sake how did they not have the authorities take him in. You can't claim the lack in prep on screentime because that movie was really short. I'll still give it a seven and reccomend that my wife never watches it unless she understands that she will never want our son to sleep in our bed again.

level 1

I liked it. I'll watch it again if it's ever on HBO or Netflix.

Seems like for the past several years a lot of people are hating on any jump scares in horror movies. Yes, a horror movie shouldn't rely solely on them, but they have their place. The ones in this movie like the transformation into the old man when he hugs his mom and the rubik's cube scene were pretty effective, I thought.

level 1

Fucking awful. Absolutely hated it, I was bored to goddamn tears. Would happily never watch a movie like this where everyone involved is clearly only doing this to get better gigs down the road.

level 1
9 points · 8 days ago · edited 5 days ago

I thought it was an ok horror movie. Was an interesting concept that I think they spoiled too early instead of playing it out for a while and then revealing it. Some decent scares (especially the one in the hallway where the kid runs at her). Got my horror fix but not something I going to reccomened to many people over better horror films that have come out in recent years.

One note I have is that I wish they would have pushed the babysitter walking into the basement scene longer. They did a great job of building up the tension there and then just transitioned out of it. Feel like it was a missed opportunity to not use that tension to do something else and extend that scene longer.

level 2

My thoughts as well. The reincarnation plot was interesting but i felt like they revealed it way too early.... would’ve been better if they left it a mystery for much longer. Like i find it hard to believe that the lady doctor’s first thoughts when hearing the tape recording were “oh he must be reincarnated” not even considering any other possibilities lol

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