In the same vein as that of RL Stine Goose bumps, the original Netflix family horror / fantasy film Night books is a fun Halloween party for everyone. Much of the appeal comes from the compelling main character Alex (Winslow Fegley), a young horror enthusiast who is lured into a witch’s apartment in order to provide her with her collection of spooky stories.
While there aren’t many characters in the movie, Alex encounters a few allies and enemies along the way who help him not escape the Wicked Witch’s grip, but also help him find the courage to be himself and embrace his morbid sensibility.
Todd is the central character in Alex’s first short horror story. The stadium, which he relays to the witch Natacha (Krysten Ritter) for her entertainment. Although fictional, sympathy is evoked for Todd when he is trapped in a purgatory playground where lost souls roam.
Natacha discredits the happy ending of the story and forces Alex to kill the character instead of allowing him to escape unscathed. This is a shocking consequence for Alex, who must abide by Natacha’s rules or face severe punishment. As well as the impact this has on Alex, the way Todd sadly reunites with an ex-girlfriend as a ghost stuck in limbo is painfully enduring.
7 Evil sorcerer
Included almost solely for his spooky visual aesthetic, The Evil Wizard (Steven R. Hart) is one of the villains in Alex’s short horror story, Bindweed. The story involves an unnamed peasant girl (Riley O’Donnell) whose village is cursed by the evil wizard, only to be deceived and defeated by a gigantic monster.
Because Alex can no longer write happy endings in his horror stories, he creatively rewrites the story so that the evil wizard becomes an evil victim rather than the main aggressor, which is a pretty unpredictable twist that proves Alex’s writing talent. But more than anything, it’s the spooky devil horns, pale skin, creepy black mask, and draped cloak that make the character so memorable.
6 Unicorn girl
When Alex is forced to write a new horror story every night, he struggles to overcome writer’s block. To help, he begins rummaging through books in Natacha’s library, where he finds hidden messages written by a mysterious character who goes by the nickname Unicorn Girl. Although invisible, Unicorn Girl provides key information to Alex on how to deal with the witch while rekindling her creative fire.
Alas, Natacha later reveals that she is Unicorn Girl. Or, at least, Unicorn Girl represents her innocent childhood and a period of happiness before being corrupted by the dark forces of evil. Thanks to the Helpful Notes from Unicorn Girl, Alex discovers a recipe for a sleep potion that he uses to steal Natacha’s keys and organize an escape.
5 Grizelda the sleeping witch
While Natacha is presented as the evil antagonist for much of the film, at the end a deeply disturbing decrepit sleeping witch named Grizelda (Jill Frappier) rises from a coffin in the middle of the apartment and begins to approach fiercely. Alex, Yazmin and even Natacha. The Macabre Comeback is the result of Alex’s latest literary happy ending, sparking a heart-wrenching chase throughout the apartment.
Grizelda is the scariest witch character in the film and delivers a grand finale of adrenaline-fueled terror as the third act picks up speed. Import? The whole story is like an inverted Hansel and Gretel, with the sleeping witch only baking desserts for him at the end.
Yazmin (Lidya Jewett) is one of the film’s two central human characters. Although a little icy towards Alex at first, Yasmin slowly warms up to the boy as a true friend and caring ally who relays his experience in Natacha’s apartment to concoct an escape plan.
Although Alex is stuck in his own horror story by being trapped in the apartment, Alex expresses how he considers meeting Yaz to be a happy ending. Besides helping Alex every moment, Yaz bravely uses Natacha’s magical perfume bottle to escape the apartment and ultimately trap the sleeping witch in the furnace. Most importantly, Yaz accepts Alex for who he is and gives him a new notebook so he can continue writing horror stories.
Colorful camp and kitsch, Krysten Ritter has a blast playing the evil enchantress Natacha, a cowardly witch who kidnaps children needs spooky and unhappy stories to keep her spirits up. As the main enemy that spurs the whole story, Natacha’s candy-filled chalet, magical perfume elixir, and colorful costumes make her alluring and menacing as a powerful movie witch.
Natacha’s evil side is informed by her own cursed childhood as the Unicorn Girl, a kidnapped child forced to do the same tasks Alex did in the story. While not sympathetic, Natacha’s backstory hints at a tinge of lost humanity that Alex hopes to avoid. Importantly, she knows exactly what kind of movie she’s in and has an absolute ball portraying the Wicked Witch.
Steal the whole show in Night books is Lenore (Cleo & Trixie), Natacha’s cute, cunning and hairless Sphynx cat who betrays the witch to become Alex’s close companion. While the CG renderings are a bit too much, Lenore’s hilarious facial reactions provide some of the biggest laughs in the movie.
When Lenore suffers physical damage, Alex saves her life at least twice, forcing the kitten to betray her evil owner and ultimately return the favor. With a great Halloween look that increases the holiday mood, Lenore is definitely the best on-screen cat companion and the most compelling non-human character in the movie.
Night books is Alex’s story through and through. In a coming-of-age tale intended to teach Alex the importance of staying true to himself no matter what others think, Alex is able to overcome his deepest insecurities, to make new ones. friends and continue to pursue his creative writing efforts.
In addition to being the main protagonist for whom the public implicitly takes root from the jump, Night books works almost entirely thanks to Winslow Fegley’s tremendous performance as Alex. Between the really funny facial reactions he gives to the encouraging soliloquies he gives, Alex is the main reason anyone would want to open up Night books and see it through to the end.
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