Come get your scare-free recap.
WARNING: ALL OF THE SPOILERS AHEAD. If at any point you think you want to watch this movie and don’t want to know what happens, stop scrolling, watch, then come back to discuss!
Greetings, fellow cowards. If you haven’t heard, there’s a new movie called You Should Have Left. From the trailer, it looks like another haunted house flick that holds the potential to ruin my good night’s sleep for the next several months. Here’s how IMDB describes the movie:
OH NO, Y’ALL. This movie is done by Blumhouse Productions who have the creepiest intro of any production company.
These are the main characters. You’ve got the dad, Theo (played by Kevin Bacon), the mom, Susanna (played by Amanda Seyfried), and the daughter, Ella (played by Avery Essex).
Early on, we see that Theo seems slightly jealous when Susanna is looking at her phone, laughing at texts from someone in the film industry she’s working with.
Theo goes to visit Susanna on set, and she’s shooting a sex scene. A loud, intense sex scene. This man is in pain! Also, an assistant won’t let him on set, so he has to listen to the sex scene from a distance. Oh, and the assistant thinks he’s Susanna’s father because of their age difference. Brutal couple minutes for Theo.
Later, Susanna and Theo agree to a family getaway.
On their way to the getaway spot, Ella viciously burns Theo about his age. This has turned into a roast. Baking Bacon.
Ella asks another hard-hitting question.
Theo tells Ella he has no intention of dying, but I’d be willing to bet that the next hour and 15 minutes of this movie have other plans in mind.
FIRST CREEPY MOMENT: Ella is making shadow puppets when a shadowy figure appears next to her. Shoutout to the trailer for preparing me for this moment; your boy didn’t even flinch.
Ella tells Theo she saw a shadow. For me, this would be where the movie ends. Curtains. End credits. I’m not staying at an Airbnb with wall shadows as an amenity, but Theo brushes it off.
So, there’ve been hints that Theo has some sort of secret and we finally learn what it is: his ex-wife died. She was found in a bathtub, and it became a big news story. Many people in the public think Theo played a role in his ex’s death, but Susanna assures Ella that he didn’t.
OK, Theo and Susanna get in an argument and discover that neither of them actually chose the place they’re staying at. You’d think this would be a BIG realization but they just gloss right over it. Hey, y’all, COMMUNICATE and EXIT.
Theo finds a note written in his journal. It seems someone has left him some good, logical advice.
More weird stuff happens. Theo has nightmares that feel real and discovers new doors that lead to dark, spooky areas. There’s also some haunting figure lurking around. Theo’s reflection is looking at him like, “Bro, let’s bounce.” (This is another moment that I was fully prepared for thanks to the trailer. DIDN’T EVEN FLINCH, BABY!)
In a shocking turn of events, the characters are going to behave like real humans would. They’re leaving the house. Finally, a crumb of logic in a horror movie!
OK, throughout the movie, Theo had been jealous of Susanna’s phone use. At one point, he even checks her phone while she’s in the bath but doesn’t find anything scandalous.
IF YOU’RE CONSIDERING WATCHING THIS MOVIE, NOW IS A GOOD TIME TO STOP SCROLLING, BECAUSE THE JUICY PARTS ARE A COMIN’.
Just as they’re about to leave, A PLOT TWIST HAPPENS: Theo goes to text Susanna and realizes that she’s got a second phone (for cheating purposes, yikes). Susanna doesn’t even try to deny it. She takes ownership and confirms Theo’s worst nightmare (which should actually be the stuff happening inside that house).
NOW, instead of leaving, Theo tells Susanna she has to go so they can have some space. And he’s keeping Ella with him. They agree that Susanna will come back the following day so they can all return home. And we’re right back to horror movie characters making frustratingly dumb decisions. Lovely.
Theo starts noticing odd things about the house’s structure that don’t make sense logistically, so he and Ella investigate. One discovery is that the house measures longer on the outside than it does on the inside. It’s being hinted that this house has some sort of supernatural element to it.
OK, the last 30 minutes GO OFF THE RAILS. More weird shit happens. Basically, Ella and Theo momentarily get separated and lost within the house but eventually they track each other down. Theo has finally learned his lesson, and he is leaving. He takes Ella out on a four-mile trip to the nearest village.
As they’re leaving, they see a figure looking at them from the house.
After walking downhill in the freezing cold, they’re suddenly back at the house. A normal person would opt to freeze to death before going back in that house after seeing someone in there, but this is a movie, so…
ONE MORE NIGHT IT IS.
I actually laughed out loud at the thought of someone bringing their child back into the house that they saw someone watching them from and being like, “Let’s go night night, no big deal.”
Theo is stirred awake by the sound of running water in the bathtub.
We now see JUST how supernatural the house is. Theo goes to a different room and sees himself writing in his journal from a few days earlier. He can’t talk to himself, but he writes a note advising himself to leave. So, it turns out the “YOU SHOULD LEAVE” note came from his future self.
Theo can hear Ella calling for him but he can’t find her. He encounters the mystery figure who talks in riddles. Theo demands that the figure let Ella go.
ANOTHER PLOT TWIST: The figure is Theo. Theo tells Theo that Theo is the one in control. Kind of understand, kind of confused? Me too!
Theo finds Ella. He says he is getting her out of there, but it seems that in exchange, he must stay. The house seems to want him to remain there.
Susanna arrives and Theo gives her Ella. She asks him to come with them and fix their relationship, but then he drops a bomb…
He IS responsible for his wife’s death.
The most “SAY WHAT, NOW?” face, ever:
Theo admits he walked in and saw his wife passing out in the bathtub. And instead of pulling her out, he watched her die because he’d been miserable with her. Damn Theo, I didn’t expect you to be garbage.
In the end, we learn that the figure in the house watching Ella and Theo earlier was actually Theo himself.
I think the house is like hell or some sort of place for people who have done wrong to stay for an eternity/the rest of their life. Either way, it ends with a narrator saying the people who are meant to be there find the house — or perhaps, the house finds them. THE END.