What You Need To Know:
The characters in THE BABYSITTERS acknowledge their actions are wrong, but don’t seem to care. There are many scenes of adultery between the older men and the minor teenage girls along with foul language, nudity and much drug use and drinking. The directing is pedestrian, and the writing is worse. There is nothing to recommend in the movie except to stay away.
(HH, Pa, LLL, V, SSS, NN, AA, DD, MMM) Strong humanist worldview with pagan overtones; 42 obscenities and nine profanities; man beat up, girl held over ledge of building; multiple graphic scenes of adultery and prostitution between various high school girls and the fathers of the children for whom they babysit; upper female nudity; much drinking and drunkenness; marijuana and LSD use; and, lying, betrayal of spouse, moral relativism, and negative father figure.
THE BABYSITTERS is a reprehensible movie about a 17-year-old high school senior, Shirley (played by Katherine Waterston), who starts a prostitute ring among her friends to “service” the fathers of the children for whom they babysit. Shirley is shy and borders on obsessive-compulsive disorder; she mops the floors when she babysits. She is attracted to Michael (played by John Leguizamo), a father who drives her home after babysitting. Michael has a troubled marriage and is drawn to the young girl. They kiss on one drive home, and Michael pays Shirley extra. The next time, they have intercourse, and he pays her more.
Soon, Shirley begins arranging for her friends to be prostitutes for some of Michael’s friends. A rival at school learns of her thriving business and attempts to steal her clients. In the end, they stop the prostitute ring when Michael has feelings for Shirley and wants to run away with her.
The only moral thread in the movie is that the characters at least know that what they are doing is wrong. They simply don’t care. Shirley asks Michael if he thinks they are going to hell, and he smiles and says yes. Shirley smiles as well. At the end of the movie, Shirley says that she doesn’t ask for forgiveness and that her sins are her own to bear. The Bible does say that we must bear our own sins if, and only if, we choose to not accept the forgiveness and cleansing of Jesus. If only these characters and the viewers could know this truth.
There is upper female nudity and many, many scenes of adultery between these older men and the minor girls, including a weekend orgy in a cabin. The characters drink heavily and are drunk often. Michael and Shirley smoke marijuana and drop acid. Shirley’s father ultimately becomes a client for one of Shirley’s classmates in a plot twist that makes no sense and is completely implausible.
In addition to a disturbing story, it is just downright boring. The characters have no motivation for what they do, and we don’t understand what they are thinking ever. Why does shy Shirley become a brazen prostitute demanding her twenty percent from her friends that she has recruited as prostitutes? There are plot holes in the story that are nearly laughable. The acting is wooden, though Waterston does effectively transform from a shy, innocent young girl to a world-weary “madame” of her school. The directing is pedestrian. There really is nothing about this movie to recommend.