Friday, December 12, 2008

Murder Party

Title: Murder Party (2008)
Dir: Jeremy Saulnier
Rating: **** out of 5 stars

Wow, I did not expect this movie to be so good! It has a clever script, wicked sense of humor, great cast, and some surprisingly cool gore. There are even a few kickass movie references (e.g., The Warriors, Blade Runner). I had a genuinely good time watching it, and I highly recommend it.

Chris (Chris Sharp) is a lonely bachelor who intends to spend Halloween night watching horror movies with his cat, Sir Lancelot. Then he finds a mysterious invitation to a "Murder Party" and decides to go. Sporting a cardboard knight costume, Chris ventures into a shady part of town. When he arrives at the address, he discovers an abandoned warehouse and a group of crazy art students who intend to kill him for the sake of art. Before long, Chris is duct-taped to a chair while his kidnappers discuss how to kill him (and a myriad of other topics). Things get bloody and downright hilarious as the night goes on.

I started watching Murder Party on a whim and fully intended to turn it off if I felt bored. From the first few minutes, I was loving it. Chris, with his sad lifestyle and do-gooder spirit, is instantly lovable and I was genuinely worried about him throughout. Mr. Sharp is funny and adorkable. But the movie is definitely stolen by two of the artists, played by Macon Blair and Alex Barnett. Macon goes from being the intimidating loose cannon of the group to a drooling puppy dog over the girl he likes. In both suits, he is hilarious. Alex is the cocky leader of the group, who gets his ass kissed by everyone because he has access to grant money. Barnett is laugh-out-loud hilarious with the way he talks and the absurd shit he says.

I cannot emphasize how damn funny this movie is. Both in dialogue and sight gags, it had me rolling. The cast is fantastic and the writing is sharp. The pace is a little slow at times, but I was never bored. I was also pretty impressed with the makeup FX work. There is not a whole lot of it, but when it kicks in, it's pretty damn cool. Especially Macon - but I won't spoil it.

I consider myself pretty knowledgable of indie/foreign/horror films, but I had heard VERY little about this movie. That is why I cannot recommend it enough, as it seems to be flying under the radar. Definitely check this one out.


Rick Bman said...

Sounds weird and interesting... may have to check it out.