And you thought your In-Laws were bad…
DIRECTOR: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett
STARRING: Samara Weaving, Adam Brody and Mark O’Brien
SCREENPLAY: Guy Busick and Ryan Murphy
RUNTIME: 95 Minutes
★★★ 3 Stars
If you thought that your wedding day was ruined by In Laws from hell then think again. Grace (played by Samara Weaver) gets more than she was bargaining for when she marries into the LaDomas Family. On her wedding night, they make her play a deadly game of hide and seek, the rules? Stay Hidden until Dawn, or Die.
Whatever you do, do not go into this film in your local theatre expecting something deep and profound. I would even go as far as to say, not to expect anything particularly horrifying. The horror and Violence and Gore in this film are so over done in places that it almost becomes a mockery of itself. There are definitely parts of the film that are designed to be comedic, and those parts come out of nowhere and are almost followed by shocked laughter, then laughter actually born of something funny.
I am not in any way though, calling this a bad film. It is entertaining in all the right ways. It is an hour and a half of over the top fun, so what if it is packed full of every horror film trope that there is, those are the things that we keep going back for in the first place.
So none of the criticism I have of this movie actually come from the presentation of the film itself. A small amount of frustration comes from the acting. It’s not the best, and is just as over the top in places as the story itself in places. Samara Weaving has a scream unlike anything I have ever heard in my life, and trust me, we hear it a lotin this film. After a while it starts to grate on you, or maybe that was just me.
No, my main criticism of this film is the ending. I thought the whole way through I knew how it ended. I would have put a large amount of money that I knew exactly how the plot was going to go. And where it is always a good surprise to be proven wrong in the situation, I think I would have preferred my ending.The change of heart that Alex has at the end seems ridiculous and literally appears out of nowhere. He does a complete 180, because Grace doesn’t want to hang around him after his slightly psychotic family tries to murder her in a terrible and violent way. Gee…. how unreasonable! We are also teased that there is a greater backstory to Alex’s character, that something happened to him as a child, but other than a quick reference half way through, we get no more information about it, And I was expecting for it to have some relevance at the end, but it was never addressed again.
Daniels arc was a little more predictable but I feel more satisfying. He gets to redeem himself for acts that we see him do as a child, and that we feel have haunted him his whole life. So his character gets to come full circle, whereas nearly everyone else ends up feeling a little flat in comparison.And the finale, the big reveal itself at the end? I think they should have resisted the urge to make it quite so comical. Especially in the case of Alex who I think we are supposed to still feel a little sorry for. Instead, you are so busy laughing that you miss any other emotion that you are supposed to be feeling at the end.
Final thoughts? So many films with this odd mix or horror and comedy have been made now that it won’t be anything that you haven’t seen before a hundred times.
But it is an entertaining 90 minutes if you want something to do for a few hours one afternoon.