Horror/Comedy/Thriller | A24 | Runtime: 95m | Rated: R
Directed By: Halina Reijn
Starring: Amandla Stenberg, Maria Bakalova, Rachel Sennott, Chase Sui Wonders, Pete Davidson, Myha’la Herrold, Lee Pace
Synopsis: As a hurricane approaches a group of wealthy 20-somethings plan a party at a remote family mansion but the party turns deadly as friendships are tested and truths are revealed.
Summertime at the movies wouldn’t quite be complete without a high-spirited horror flick and Halina Reijn delivers just that with Bodies Bodies Bodies. Now from first glance this movie does feel like something extremely similar to others we’ve seen in the genre. It’s a group of relatively unlikable zoomers who think they know everything about life and that any opinion outside of their perspective is something ripe for a hashtag movement. Yet each of them do have a couple appealing qualities, and a constant feed of charisma that make them comical to watch. This movie is a blend of the usual clichés, dark hallways, characters getting separated, co-mingling relationship dynamics, juicy secrets, and it’s an entertaining romp in a fancy house on a dark and stormy night.
Bodies Bodies Bodies weaves traditional horror elements with a charming sense of humor and despite its pacing issues, the confident structure of this story, and what it wanted to accomplish was a delightfully sadistic ride filled with many twists, and moments of misdirection. None of these characters are incredibly unique but this random party completely going off the rails was a good time. Admittedly it does take a bit to get going. The first act does pace itself longer than needed because these stretches are when Bodies Bodies Bodies feels its least ambitious. The time is however filled with effective humor and splashes of awkward tension as banter sort of fills in the backdrop of who all these people are to one another. So, while the pacing was uneven there’s still enough going on to keep the appeal up during the quieter moments.
But when the first body drops the engagement really kicks in nicely and that is when this movie is riding at full speed. And bringing something unique to the horror genre just in an extremely familiar package. For me this was a movie that was engaging, just nothing that completely lured me in. Bodies Bodies Bodies though, unlike many in the playground of horror, sticks its landing flawlessly and so subtly that when you look back at the movie leading up to it, you suddenly feel a heightened sense of appreciation. Which is always a fresh feeling to have when watching so many movies that never really step out of the box. Bodies Bodies Bodies creates something unconventional out of completely recycled parts and it’s pleasantly clever.
Anthony J. Digioia II © 2022 SilverScreen Analysis. All Rights Reserved.