Genre: Horror Comedy
Running Time: 103 mins.
Where Can You See It?: In Theaters & PVOD
Premise: It’s basically Freaky Friday the 13th. A grisly serial killer named The Butcher (Vince Vaughn) and teenage girl Millie (Kathryn Newton) switch bodies after he stabs her with a magic-infused knife.
Behind-the-Scenes: Hails from Blumhouse and the same director of Happy Death Day and Happy Death Day 2 U – Christopher Landon. This is Vaughn’s first comedy in quite a while. He’s been in serious mode as an actor since 2015’s flop, Unfinished Business.
The Good: What a killer concept. Literally. I mean, c’mon – Freaky Friday the 13th. Ingenious. While the movie doesn’t always live up to the comedic possibilities you might conjure in your mind, it’s still plenty entertaining. I saw this in a near empty AMC theater back in November, and that was a shame because it’s the kind of movie designed to play like gangbusters at a rowdy, packed Friday night screening. The kills are over-the-top and gratuitous in hilarious ways, and Vaughn seems to be having a blast getting in touch with his inner teenage girl. He plays it pretty broad, but it’s nice to see him letting loose. Director Landon has a real knack for finding humor in violent, horrific scenarios, and between this and his Happy Death Day films, he’s provided a welcome breath of fresh air to the horror genre. I’ll see anything he makes from here.
The Bad: I wish The Butcher had more of a personality. As written, he’s all silent menace, so when the characters switch bodies, Newton is stuck playing a cypher. There’s really nothing to dig into, other than playing it stone-faced. More definable personality traits would have really added something. A subplot about Millie (while in the body of Vaughn) trying to connect with her mother in a department store dressing room falls flat. There’s also a really weird car scene between Vaughn and Millie’s boy crush that seems designed for laughs, but registers as too odd to achieve them. Some of the slapstick humor may not work for everyone.
Should You See It?: Yes. It’s a fun, silly romp with a splash of outrageous kills. Good for a Friday night flick. If you missed it in theaters, now’s a perfect time to catch up with it.
Star Rating: *** out of 5 stars
Better Than: Friday the 13th remake
Worse Than: Freaky Friday remake
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