Going to an oldie (sort of) this time. This one caught my attention, coming from the director of Blue Ruin, and starring the star of Blue Ruin, one of the best movies I saw last year. So, lets see how this feature debut works out, and talk about Murder Party.
A random invitation to a Halloween party leads a man into the hands of a rogue collective intent on murdering him for the sake of their art, sparking a bloodbath of mishap, mayhem and hilarity.
So, like I mentioned above, this is the feature debut of director Jeremy Saulnier. Before this he wrote and directed shorts that I’ve not seen, and has been pretty actively working as a cinematographer one other films that I’ve never heard of. With that said, after this he wrote and directed a really excellent film called Blue Ruin (which you need to watch, right now) and his upcoming Green Room sounds great too. This one sounded like such a departure from his other film that I was really curious to see what he did with a horror comedy, and I’ll say it… it’s a pretty fun watch.
The movie starts with our hero, who picks up a random piece of paper on the ground that turns out to be an invitation to a murder party, and inexplicably decides (after consulting with his cat, of course) that he’s going to attend. Of course, this murder party turns out to be a party during which a group of artists are going to actually murder him.
The actors all around are pretty fantastic honestly, I found them believably pretentious and as a former film-student and fan of the arts in general, I’ve definitely talked to people like this, the artists yearning for the attention of the alpha-artist and so on and so forth. It’s a pretty funny (if not, at times, infuriating) dynamic between all of them. Plus, we have Macon Blair (Blue Ruin), in a smaller role, but still proving his chops as an actor.
The effects in the movie are pretty great too, Saulnier obviously has a love for practical blood effects and does a great job pulling them off with a limited budget. There are also some bizarre and unexpected deaths, like Macon having a werewolf mask melted to his face. I’d apologize for spoilers, but the movie is 8 years old. Let’s get it together please.
The movie works and doesn’t drag on, which does help. It takes itself a touch more seriously than most horror-comedies but that also really does work in it’s favour. It might not be as light and silly as Tucker & Dale, but it is definitely worth your time. So check it out.