Children aren’t born inherently evil except for in the movies. Take for example Mervyn LeRoy’s The Bad Seed or Stephen King’s Children of the Corn, where parents and other adults rue the day at the hands of fledgling ne’er do wells. In June, the latest film from L. Gustavo Cooper (The Devil Incarnate), the titular child is adopted by a loving couple and unwittingly sets about terrorising them. Unwittingly because unbeknown to June, as a baby, she was part of a sacrifice gone wrong, and now a demon sits inside her waiting to unleash the apocalypse.
It’s hard not to feel sorry for Starship Trooper’s Casper Van Dien, as the adoptive daddy whose wife (Victoria Pratt) appears to be deliberately ignoring June’s graphic crayon drawings and the homicidal supernatural events happening around them. But then mummy has her own secrets and as a shady adoption agency move in around the family, June appears to be struggling with her powers.
Cherry picking form the likes of Poltergeist, Carrie and The Last Exorcism, June won’t feel particularly fresh to harden horror fiends, but it’ll entertain, in some small measure, those who like their scares to be nowhere near 11. As genre film-making goes, it’s as safe as Fort Knox.
Where praise should be directed to is young Kennedy Brice as June. Being the lynch pin of events, and appearing in nearly every scene is tough going for anyone and Brice is reminiscent of a certain Linda Blair as she flips from cute as a button to hellspawn in the flick of a switch. Going by the rushed and open ending, there’s potential here for another chapter in June’s life, but it’s going to have to iron out its kinks if it’s to become anything more than an afternoon’s distraction.
This review originally appeared in FilmInk.