October 21, 2021
3 / 5
5 / 5
Ready or Not Review: A Joy for Horror Fans
Ready or Not follows a young woman named Grace (Samara Weaving). As her marriage inches closer and closer, Grace sees a life suitable for familial fulfillment. She marries her man: Alex, a member of the rich Le Domas family. On her wedding night, Grace becomes part of a family tradition. She has to play hide and seek (games are an integral part of the Le Domas’ family fortune). Grace sees the game as being a form of playful camaraderie. But in reality, the Le Domas family believes that in order to keep their lives/profits, they must sacrifice a bride. Grace, completely unaware of the family’s deadly intentions, chooses a hiding spot and from there, the game begins.
Horror fans will hoot and holler at this flick. Like The Burbs (1989), Fright Night (1985), and Shaun of the Dead (2004), Ready or Not takes a terrifying situation and has a fun time with horror components. The film melds horror and comedy, creating a cinematic hybrid that flows like running water. Instead of being a film that embraces gut-wrenching sensibilities, it perfectly taps into the energetic nature of hide and seek. On a recurring basis, there are sudden left and right turns, designed to keep audience members on their toes.
As a whole, Ready or Not is an economic adventure. It’s constantly moving, and in retrospect, there isn’t any unnecessary baggage. Due to its fast pace, the limited atmosphere feels bigger than it actually is. As viewers, we are put in tight places, but there is always a sense of domestic beauty due to the production design. With the help of Andrew M. Stearn (the production designer), Brett Jutkiewicz’ cinematography perfectly parallels the detailed materialism of upper class living. In turn, the limited atmosphere becomes a visual treat. We are stunned by every single part of the mansion, because every nook and cranny is monumentally pristine.
Obviously, every good film must posses characters that connect with us. After all, characters are cinematic engines. They bring stories to life and eventually help films reach their destination. Characters hook audience members, allowing a narrative to achieve a sense of personal intrigue. Thankfully, Ready or Not has a phenomenal cast, brimming with freshness. The screenplay, written by Guy Busick and R. Christopher Murphy, constructs an array of colorful characters who bring their own forms of energy into the narrative.
In that same respect, villains are typically vital to a film’s success. They set the stakes, and push the heroic figures to the limit. In this specific case, the Le Domas family is unbelievably entertaining. In many ways, they are comedic linchpins filled with slapstick sensibilities. They stumble through the narrative, completely unaware of how to accomplish their goals. Whenever they succeed, the film brings them to their knees. Every instance of success is short-lived, but make no mistake about it: They are formidable villains. The concept of being outnumbered always remains within our minds. At times, we can predict the outcome of suspenseful events. However, these predictive elements aren’t flaws. Every character manages to become a beacon of delight, and in turn, every inch of suspense is magnetically attractive. We are eager to see these characters interact.
To coincide with the compelling characters, Ready or Not[read more]