The Boogeyman | Official Trailer | 20th Century Studios

It’s perhaps most fascinating, then, that by its climax, The Boogeyman’s strengths and weaknesses find themselves swapping positions. The meandering, if capably acted, dramatics of the Harper family come into sharper and more compelling focus in the third act, resolving each of their respective arcs with nuance and grace. Unfortunately, the boogeyman itself becomes a victim of overexposure, abandoning its ethereal nature for one of solid shape and skeletal structure, proving why the unknown is more horrifying than the anatomically concrete. It certainly doesn’t help that the monster’s computer-generated design isn’t exactly inspired or novel, but it’s more frustrating that the film doesn’t stick to its convictions by continuing to let our imaginations fill in the missing pieces.


The Boogeyman is the rare 98-minute film that feels like it needed further tightening to reign in its dramatic dalliances, but it’s also a film that hits hard when it decides to unleash its beast. What ultimately makes an impression is the lurking sense of danger and the taunting playfulness of a monster (and filmmakers) with its own private sense of humor. Tense, vicious, and sometimes just a little bit mean, this is a perfect film to watch with the lights off.

The Boogeyman opens in theaters on June 2, 2023