First reactions to Knock at the Cabin are calling it M. Night Shyamalan's best movie in 20 years

Dave Bautista in Knock at the Cabin
(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Knock at the Cabin is set to hit the big screen shortly, and the first reactions from critics are in. The movie follows a family of three on vacation in an idyllic remote cabin, whose trip is brutally interrupted by the arrival of four strangers who demand that they sacrifice one of their own in order to prevent the apocalypse. M. Night Shyamalan's first movie since 2021's Old stars Dave Bautista, Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, Rupert Grint, Nikki Amuka-Bird, and Abby Quinn. 

Total Film's Matt Maytum tweeted (opens in new tab) that "a few qualms aside, Knock at the Cabin is the Shyamalan I’ve enjoyed most for a long time. Intriguing premise, great performances (particularly Dave Bautista and Ben Aldridge), enjoyably straightforward execution. A good time."

Film critic Michael Nordine echoed that this was a career highlight for the director, tweeting (opens in new tab): "Knock at the Cabin is M. Night Shyamalan's best movie in damn near 20 years. Bautista is always great but I don't think he's ever been as perfectly cast as he is here – one scene in particular (you'll know it when you see it) is legit spine-tingling."

Digital Spy's Ian Sandwell agrees that Bautista's performance is a highlight, writing (opens in new tab): "Knock at the Cabin is a taut, propulsive thriller that keeps you guessing and maintains the tension across its tight runtime. Dave Bautista is the standout, both affecting and terrifying."

Meanwhile, Fandango's Erik Davis is (opens in new tab) "happy to report that M. Night Shyamalan’s Knock at the Cabin is a real deal nail-biter – startling & captivating from start to finish. It’s lean & mean, and a perfect little edge-of-your-seat thriller for early February," and The Digital Fix's James Osborne says (opens in new tab) the film is "surprisingly disciplined, and that restraint intertwines with impressive work from the cast to make a neat, tasty package."

Knock at the Cabin arrives in theaters on February 3. While we wait, check out our picks of the other most exciting upcoming movies on the way in 2023 and beyond. 

Entertainment Writer

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering everything film and TV-related across the Total Film and SFX sections. I help bring you all the latest news and also the occasional feature too. I’ve previously written for publications like HuffPost and i-D after getting my NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism.