Ready or Not is a devilishly funny slasher masterpiece.
Ready or Not ticks all the boxes to be entertaining as hell. It hits the right tone being evenly funny as brutal. Although there’s no mystery of what is going on, as the film opens with a scene that’s a prediction for the actual story, there are a lot of surprises left.
There is much tension, a thrilling game of hide and seek, brutally fun kills and very odd characters who, even though they are extremely funny, don’t lose their humanity and are as reluctant to kill, as the bride is reluctant to be hunted and killed for the sake of the family.
Ready or Not is a campy game, with gimmicks thrown in for extra laughs, with a great built up, with excellent timing for the kills, the laughs and the tension. Samara Weaving is a briljant bride as naive and open as she becomes tenacious and a bold scream queen, armed with her determination and an antique shotgun.
When Grace marries Alex Le Domas, an heir of an extremely wealthy family who required their money by making games by means of a pact once made with a mysterious Mr Le Bail, she doesn’t know what she is in for. Her wedding night transforms in a wicked game of Hide and Seek, which is her initiation into the family. But it isn’t as innocent as this child’s play sounds, it’s a hunt to kill and they’ll sacrifice her for the sake of the family. She has till sunrise to hide, but who will live and who will die?
Why you should watch it
First of all it’s a blast. It a very refreshing occult slasher tale that keeps you and Grace on your toes. With an excellent mansion as a background, strange family members and a mysterious box it is a very well done mixture between Clue, a gothic slasher, a comedy farce with lot’s of doors, secrets passageways and a brutal horror with a spectaculair splattering ending.
Although you might think it’s a satire, aimed at the rich, they are not dismissed as evil people, but as frightened and reluctant as Grace. Sure they are funny, cold like Charity, coke sniffing crazy and a terrible shot like Emilie, freakishly devilish like aunt Helene or dumb like Fitch but smart enough to look for instructions on YouTube how to use a crossbow and totally insane like butler Stevens. But they all do it with fear in mind. Not fear to lose their money, which is not the root of all evil but acquired by evil, but to lose their own lives.
It makes the film smart and witty, and very funny. Nobody is really evil, but there are consequences. At least that’s what they think. The fun part is, they don’t really know until it may be too late. That final piece of the mystery is the brilliant conclusion of the film.
My favorite part
The hit and miss shots of poor crazy Emilie are delightful gimmicks in the film that never gets old, it’s funny every time. The childish excitement of Grace when she finds out she must play a game and she still thinks it’s all fun and games, while the family members with grave faces get handed over the antique weapons to hunt Grace, is endearing and painstakingly funny.
But the ending is by far the red colored icing on the cake of this bloody masterpiece. While the kills are never explicitly shown, only the bloody result, this time the viewers get what they have longend for, a small splatter fest, again with such good timing that it’s both horrific and hilarious. The enraged screaming of Grace is the outburst she has been waiting for and that could have been the end of it, but luckily it’s not.
Fun factor: ★★★★★
Gore factor: ★★☆☆☆
Entertainment factor: ★★★★★
Cast and crew
Ready or Not is directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillet and written by Guy Busick and R. Christopher Murphy. It stars Samara Weaving (Grace), Adam Brody (Daniel), Mark O’Brien (Alex), Henry Czerny (Tony), Andie MacDowell (Becky), Melanie Scrofano (Emilie), Kristian Bruun (Fitch), Nicky Guadagni (Helene), Elyse Levesque (Charity), John Ralston (Stevens).
Duration: 95 minutes. Music: Brian Tyler. Cinematography: Brett Jutkiewicz. Edited by: Terel Gibson. Production companies: Mythology Entertainment, Vinson Films. Distributed by: 20th Century Fox, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.