Abigail | Review by: Benjamin Garrett

 Imagine your birthday is in a few months. Your friends and family are planning a surprise party, but instead of keeping it a secret, they continuously tell you about it in detail. The day finally comes, and for about 45 minutes leading up to the big surprise, they try to convince you there is no party. This sums up my experience with Abigail. A fun movie that could’ve had a great reveal, if the studio had a little faith in their product. 

This isn’t just a case of the trailers giving too much away. It’s straight up bad marketing. Radio Silence has been killing it in the slasher genre these past 5 years, and in an ideal world, their name would be enough to sell tickets. The first 45 minutes of this movie drag out a twist that we already know is coming. Whatever misdirection and mystery that’s attempted fails because the audience knows damn well what’s up. I won’t lie - I was a little bored. The writing was too weak, and the characters were too uninteresting to cover up the non-existent anticipation factor. Once the carnage began, though, I settled into my seat, ready for the bloodbath I paid to see. 

Even if it does take too long to get there, Abigail knows how to show slasher enthusiasts a good time. When the fangs come out and blood starts painting the walls, it’s kind of a blast. There are some really fun sequences that take established vampire lore and put a creative new twist on those old ideas. The mansion makes for a perfect hunting ground, with plenty of different rooms and corridors to keep the setting fresh. 

Though the character work is pretty basic, the ensemble works really well playing off one another. This is a great cast, and each of them brings a different kind of energy to their characters. Dan Stevens is obviously quite charming and charismatic, but he’s so good at playing a complete asshole here. Melissa Barrera takes her final girl experience and applies it to here role here. She’s often the brains and voice of reason in the group, which contrasts nicely with some of the more impulsive characters. As solid as some of the adult performances are, it’s Alisha Weir who complete steals the show. The role requires her to swap between childlike innocence and a terrifying presence, which she accomplishes with ease. 

Abigail is another solid, blood drenched outing from Radio Silence, but a misguided marketing campaign unfortunately sucks the fun out of the first half. Thankfully, a strong ensemble, Alisha Weir’s star making performance and a handful of creative moments give the movie just enough bite to get by. 


Review by: Benjamin Garrett

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