In another one of my reviews I mentioned I've become desensitized to anything horror and gore. Well, you can officially scratch that! We have a winner! (insert game show winner SFX). It has been a long, long time ago since a film really shook me up. Now, let's get into this review. I'm going to keep this one short and sweet!
|This is the face of the "friendzoned" man!|
Samantha (Najarra Townsend ) is a troubled young woman. Having gone through both alcohol and drug abuse, she seeks solace in her romantic relationship with Nikki (Katie Stegeman ). Frustrated by Nikki's unwillingness to fully commit to her, she goes back to the bottle and meets a mysterious young man at a party. After receiving a spiked drink from the man, the two go off to his car and what seems to be a consensual one night stand, soon turns into a rape. The next morning she wakes up in her own bed, more confused than anything by the events of the night prior. As the hours and days go by, her body starts to deteriorate and it seems she has contracted an STD. The truth behind her condition is much worse than she could ever imagine.
|Lo and behold, the "friendzoned" woman!|
The writing is pretty decent actually, you see; at its core the movie is about a young woman trying to leave her demons behind. Trying to fix whatever mess she created in her past but going about it all the wrong ways of course. As unsympathetic her character is, it would have been fascinating to see her love affair with Nikki crash and burn, the relationship with her mother (Caroline Williams) deteriorate and her falling back into her old habits. This could have been one of those Brett Easton Ellis, L.A. tragedies. You see, Samantha is a doomed character; destined to lose. Her demise takes a turn for the horrific though. That's its great strength and weakness at the same time. When the film does turn full on horror in its third act, it falls apart. Common sense and logic go straight out the window. Yes, even for a horror movie, the choices some characters make are just too unbelievable and head scratching stupid.
|Ah, my typical Friday night...|
On the other side, this movie has body horror that would make David Cronenberg proud. It's definitely not as outrageous as in The Fly. Her bodily breakdown is firmly rooted in reality and is much more relatable. Now, mind you I can watch a man get ripped apart and heads explode and not bat an eye, but this had some scenes that had me cringing and made me look away from the screen. It's here that the movie succeeds as a horror. It's not a full on splatter-fest. It shows you just enough for you to fill in the terrible blanks. I guarantee you, if this film becomes mandatory viewing during high-school sex-ed classes; no one there will practice unsafe sex...ever.
|...And what I look like the next Saturday morning.|
Yes, the movie is uneven, not very original and at times just plain illogical, It remains an interesting and fascinating watch though. A very different and fresh take on a horror sub-genre that's over-saturated at the moment (you'll get it half way into the movie what Samantha is becoming). Well worth your time.