In a simply stunning turn of events, we have a new Children of the Corn film. A franchise that begun in 1984 with an adaption of the Stephen King short story of the same name. A franchise that was 8 films & 1 remake long. The last Children of the Corn (Genesis) was released in 2011 and that seemed to be it for the struggling series. It has had far more bad films then it has had good so the release of this latest comes as a serious surprise.
You can read our reviews of the entire series so far below as well as our definitive ranking of the movies which has been updated to include this one.
1984 – Children of the Corn
1992 – Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice
1995 – Children of the Corn III – Urban Harvest
1996 – Children of the Corn IV: The Gathering
1998 – Children Of The Corn V: Fields Of Terror
1999 – Children of the Corn 666: Isaac’s Return
2001 – Children of the Corn: Revelation
2009 – Children of the Corn (Remake)
2011 – Children of the Corn: Genesis
Going in to Children of the Corn: Runaway it is important to keep in mind that links to the original story will likely be non-existent. It’s not important nor is it particularly necessary. That being said though Runaway makes a decent attempt of having at least tentative links.
A young woman called Ruth (Marci Miller) escapes the town of Gatlin after witnessing the horrific events that befell the town. The children, under the spell of a child preacher who was influenced by ‘He Who Walks Behind the Rows’, rose up & murdered all the adults in the town. Ruth, heavily pregnant believes that the entity wants her baby so escapes.
Over the next decade she stays on the move with her young son, Aaron (Jake Ryan Scott). The pair rarely stay in one town for long but sensing frustration & tired herself, Ruth decides to stay in a small town where most of the locals seem friendly. She gets a job as a mechanic and tries to enrol Aaron at the local school.
Things seem ok, except for her occasional visions of children slaughtering adults and the little girl who seems to be leading everything. Has Ruth really escaped the horrors of her past or are they about to catch up with her?
Yes. The answer is yes. Ruth is going to have to confront her past if it means saving her son.
The good news? Children of the Corn: Runaway is not a bad film. The bad news? It’s not a good film. It sits squarely in the middle which for this series makes it an instant classic! The plot is fairly well-told & while its inevitable conclusion is predictable it still delivers on some thrills. A lot of praise can be lumped on Runaway because of the good acting of Marci Miller. She a well-developed character, hardened by her experience but willing to let her guard down should the moment arise.
As things get more desperate for her she really shows off her talents & she’s someone you can really get behind as a character. Unfortunately, she is it. The rest of the cast are average to bad with characters that are cliched & lazy. We get the usual prejudiced rednecks, religious nuts turning their noses up at Ruth’s unmarried state and of course, corn children.
In 2018, children singing religious songs in the field just don’t cut it. They’re supposed to be creepy but they really don’t manage it. Runaway has very few scares, most of the tension building fails as the sequences are predictable & unexciting. A character walking around in the dark asking ‘whose there?’ before getting killed is so unoriginal it would be funny if it wasn’t so graphic!
Children of the Corn: Runaway is a surprisingly bloody movie. When the killing starts, the blood flies & looks extremely realistic. The clever shots help sell the brutality of what we’re seeing making it much more effective. On this alone, Runaway is up there as one of the best Children of the Corn movies so far.
The lack of originality in the movie really harms it but by time the credits roll you’re unlikely to have regretted the time spent. Considering what has come before, it’s just nice to not have to sit through another terrible Children of the Corn movie!
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Children of the Corn: Runaway
The Final Score - 6.5/10