Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Final Girls

Let me tell you a little bit about my favorite movie of the last six months: The Final Girls.

I have some majorly conflicted feelings about this film, because A) it's my favorite film of the last six months, and B) I think it really squanders what I feel is one of the coolest premises in meta-horror cinema.

For those who haven't checked it out yet, here's the deal: A group of modern teenagers are at an old cinema, and they get sucked into an 80s slasher film. They have to survive till the end of the "movie," but they also have to interact with the movie characters, who somehow develop deeper personalities just by being exposed to the real world.

This seems like the perfect set-up for a lot of self-referential humor and winks at the camera. It does have a bunch of that, of course (the use of black-and-white flashbacks is genius), but it becomes obvious pretty quickly that the movie cares much more about the emotional stuff than the comedic stuff. More importantly, though, it cares more about the emotional stuff than the horror stuff, and that is what leaves me conflicted.

On the one hand, I love this movie. It made me cry. On the other hand, though, I can't tell you how much I'd love to watch a version of this movie that...
set a more authentic 80s tone...
that didn't treat the murders as an afterthought...
and that actually tried to by scary once in a while.

In my mind, this movie is R-rated. It embraces the sub-genre. It doesn't forget the horror part of "horror-comedy." This version of the movie, however, was not made. The actual finished result is much sweeter, and prettier, and more cathartic. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. It just wasn't what I had hoped when I heard the premise.

But like I said, The Final Girls is great. Check out my review to see exactly how much I liked it. But just remember: in a perfect world, there are two versions of this film. One has more decapitations.

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