Everyone remembers their first horror experience. For our hero, Dax (Robbie Kay) that experience is when he and his mother sat down to watch a horror film on Halloween night. The horror doesn't end after the film though, as Dax's life is forever changed when a masked man breaks in to their home and murders his mother. Flash-forward about a decade, and Dax, ironically, is the biggest fan of the horror genre. Such a big fan, in fact, that Dax and his two closest friends Krill (Jacob Batalon) and Sam (Seychelle Gabriel) have purchased tickets to the premier horror event, Blood Fest. However, Dax's father (Tate Donovan) has other plans for Dax, and forbids him from attending the event, ripping his ticket, claiming that the horror genre is nothing but bad news, especially for their family.
He feels that horror fans forget what is it like to be scared of a horror film because of their over glorification and commercialization of the genre. Walsh announces that the guests are in actual danger, and the 12 horror movie set pieces they have re-created for blood fest are actually out to murder them, with cameras constantly recording the footage to be edited into the "horror movie to end all horror movies". He states you can only survive if you know the rules of the genre, and Dax, Krill and Sam, along with Ashley, just might have the knowledge to get out alive.
Owen Egerton, who stars in the film, also directs and pens the script. Egerton's script is surprisingly sharp. Not just with its deconstruction of the horror genre, but also in it's often emotional character work and its thoroughly satisfying twists and turns. It’s not just a goofy parody; it has real arcs and personal stakes. Even its side characters get nice arcs, even if some are predictable. The entire cast, most noticeably Jacob Batalon, never fail to be charming. My only real complaint with Egerton's work is his lack of genuinely frightening scenes. Other than a Saw parody halfway through that's more suspenseful than the entirety of 2017's Jigsaw, none of the horror scenes are all that scary. It's a perfect first horror film for those too scared of something like The Conjuring films.
There's three ways a horror movie ends. One, one hero survives. Two, no one survives. Three? You'll have to find out by checking Blood Fest out for yourself. Rooster Teeth proves once again that they have the ability to nail any new idea they attempt. Blood Fest is a good, old fashion good time at the cinema. Hell, there's a clown on zombie battle, and the strangest, most glorious celebrity cameo that I have no idea why it's in the film, but I am glad it is. Rooster Teeth is unstoppable at the moment. Hell, their upcoming anime series stars Michael B. freakin' Jordan. With Blood Fest, they show no signs of slowing down the unique and special content they are currently producing.
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