Warning: SPOILERS lie ahead for Five Nights at Freddy’s!
- The Five Nights at Freddy’s movie has received negative reviews from critics but has been well-received by audiences, breaking box office records.
- The latest episode of Screen Rant‘s Pitch Meeting series humorously criticizes the adaptation for its focus on Easter eggs and fan service, lackluster characterization, and lack of exciting kills.
- Lessons for a potential sequel include keeping secrets hidden, improving execution of scares, and addressing predictability criticisms from the first movie.
Having already become a box office success, the latest episode of Screen Rant‘s own Pitch Meeting series is taking a look at Five Nights at Freddy’s. After spending the better part of a decade in development, the adaptation of Scott Cawthon’s horror game franchise hit theaters and Peacock in October to largely negative reviews from critics, who lamented its lack of scares, predictable plot and excessive fan service. Audiences, on the other hand, have been very favorable in their reactions to the movie, with Five Nights at Freddy’s opening weekend breaking multiple records at the box office.
On the heels of its long-awaited release, Screen Rant‘s Pitch Meeting series is taking a stab at the Five Nights at Freddy’s movie. The episode, as seen at the top of this article, sees host Ryan George jokingly pitching himself for a cameo in the project, only for his Studio Guy character to instead call up famous YouTube gamer MatPat for the part. This leads into the video’s various criticisms of the adaptation, namely its focus on Easter eggs and fan service for those who played the games, as well as the over lackluster characterization of Josh Hutcherson’s Mike as a constant sleeper while the plot happens around him, and the lack of exciting kills on screen from the animatronics themselves.
Five Nights At Freddy’s 2 Has A Lot To Learn From The First Movie’s Mistakes
Much like the early years of video game adaptations, the divide between critics and audiences on Five Nights at Freddy’s has proven pretty large. The former has given the movie largely negative reviews, clocking in at a 29% approval rating on review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes, while the latter have given it a very positive 89% approval rating on the site, praising its depiction of the expansive lore of Cawthon’s games as well as feeling it stayed true to the spirit of the source material.
Whichever side one falls on regarding the movie, there are still a lot of lessons a potential Five Nights at Freddy’s 2 will have to learn from its predecessor. One of the first, while seemingly an obvious one, is a better effort to keep many of the movie’s secrets hidden both during its production and in the lead up to its release. The glaring example that hurt the first movie was Matthew Lillard’s role in the project, with the first casting reports citing him as the franchise’s main antagonist William Afton, only for subsequent reports to state otherwise. This led to theories of a plot twist reveal he was still the game character, which ultimately proved to be true and became one of the movie’s targets for predictability criticisms.
Lillard also revealed before the movie’s release that he was signed on to a three-picture contract with Blumhouse and Universal.
Another of the main lessons a Five Nights at Freddy’s movie sequel will have to learn is how it executes its scares. The original games became such a viral sensation thanks to their sudden jump scares as much as the overall atmosphere of its eponymous setting, with the movie offering a handful of them, but largely moving away from them in favor of a general ominous depiction of its murderous animatronics. Though some have argued this was the right choice as many modern horror movies have become reliant on this technique, others felt that the movie lacked the same shocks of its source material, leading to many calls for a change in planning for the teased Five Nights at Freddy’s 2.
Source: Pitch Meeting