Henry gets dropped off at grandpa's house in the middle of nowhere in the trailer for Knuckleball. There's three rules that the 12-year old must follow: Lend a Hand, Do What He Says, and Keep Your Phone Charged, which Henry does, for the most part. One of the main points is that little Henry learns to throw a killer knuckleball from his grandfather after chopping some wood. However, things take a turn for the worse when Grandpa mysteriously passes away in his sleep. The tagline for the film reads, "To catch a predator he must think like one," which should give one a good idea of what they're in for with Knuckleball.
Since Henry's parents have left him with grandpa, his only help is the neighbor, who turns out to be a psychopath who is hunting the young boy. Unable to get ahold of his family, Henry sets traps for the neighbor, who is trying to kill the boy for unknown reasons, that may lead to a dark family secret that grandpa has been hiding. Right away, Knuckleball starts to look like a gritty take on Home Alone, which is not a criticism. Little Henry is pretty brutal as he tries to escape the neighbor.
Knuckleball premiered at Fantasia International Film Festival this year to positive reviews and arrives in theaters and On Demand / Digital HD on October 5th. The film has been labeled as a thriller, which is evident from the trailer alone, but there are definitely some horror elements thrown into the mix as well. Luca Villacis plays Henry in the movie and his performance has been applauded for being a relatable little kid as opposed to the mischievous Kevin McCallister in Home Alone. Munro Chambers plays Dixon, the psychopath neighbor, and his performance has been praised as well for coming off likable and then going on a rampage.
In addition to Luca Villacis and Munro Chambers, Knuckleball also stars Michael Ironside, Kathleen Munroe, and Chenier Hundal. Ironside plays grandpa in the film and his performance leaves one to believe that there is a lot more going on under the service, which is even evident in the brief trailer. Young Henry is prepared to take on Dixon, the neighbor, but why does he want to kill Henry so bad? That's a mystery that will be solved in a few weeks when the movie hits select theaters and streaming outlets.
Knuckleball is directed by Canadian filmmaker Michael Peterson, director of the feature films Eddies: The Documentary and Lloyd the Conqueror, along with some short films as well. The screenplay was written by Kevin Cockle and Michael Peterson. The film premiered at the Fantasia Film Festival this summer, as well as at the Dead by Dawn and Cinequest Film Festivals earlier this year to mostly positive reviews. You can check out the trailer for Knuckleball below, thanks to the Freestyle Digital Media YouTube channel.