31 Days of Horror, Day 13. The Final Girls.

Posted: October 14, 2016 in B-Movies, Cinema / Film, Friday the 13th, Horror, Reviews, Slasher, undead

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In honour of the 13th day of the month, (despite it not falling on a Friday this year)  I’d like to look at a film that celebrates one of the most well known slashers around, the hulking manifestation of angry abstinence himself, Jason Voorhees.

There are many out there whom think that horror has no heart. I of course mean the metaphorical definition of heart, not the literal, there a hundreds of movies with those if that’s your thing. They assume that because the genre is predominantly packed with blood, and guts, and violence that it’s incapable of evoking any other emotions aside from anger, or fear. To these people I offer a challenge, watch The Changeling, Let the Right One In, The Fly, (1986) Spring, the last segment of the Tales from the Darkside movie, etc, and tell me horror’s incapable of having heart. Hell even Frankenstein is essentially a love story, and The Creature is the Pop culture granddaddy of all monsters.

Another example of horror with heart is 2015’s The Final Girls, directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson.

The film follows Max Cartwright, (Taissa Farmiga of American Horror Story fame) whose mother, Amanda, (Malin Akerman) star, and scream queen of the 1986 slasher flick, Camp Bloodbath, is killed in accident after a failed audition.

Three years later, on the anniversary of her mother’s death Max is invited to a special double-feature screening of Camp Bloodbath, and its sequel as a special guest by her friend’s brother. A fire breaks out in the theatre during the film, and Max, as well as a handful of others end up trapped inside the movie after slashing through the screen in an attempt to escape. There they must help the cast survive the wrath of Billy, a former camper who was severely burned by fireworks inside an outhouse by councillors.

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At its core The Final Girls is a story about grief, and the difficulty coping with the loss of a loved one. It’s a meta affair, akin to Cabin in the Woods, and Scream, and a heartfelt homage to the slasher genre that inspired it, namely the aforementioned Friday the 13th series. It’s also hilarious, thanks in part to a supporting cast featuring, Adam Devine, (Workaholics) Thomas Middleditch, (Silicon Valley) and Alia Shawkat, (Arrested Development).

The film released to positive reviews, but suffered the fate of bargain-bin burial thanks in part to its PG-13 rating, a red flag for many horror fans. It’s a shame really, because despite the lack of the coveted R rating, The Final Girls still managed to slip in some inventive kills, (I’m looking at you Devine pretzel).

The Final Girls is an easy recommendation, both entertaining, and surprisingly sweet. Do yourself a favour, and check it out. I snagged a copy for five bucks at Walmart, and it was five-hundred pennies well spent.

That’s all for today skiddies, but do come back tomorrow, and as always, stay scared!

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