buizel’s review published on Letterboxd:
Holy shit Miramax has a new logo!
The people on this website are catching on with the John Hyams come-up story and I like that very much, even though the only film I saw of his was the previous Alone, when I looked this up on Letterboxd I said "Oh shit, John Hyams is directing this!". There's directors out there who simply know their way around thrills/scares/chase scenes while injecting some cinematic flair and a great sense of geography, like Wes Craven or Jaume Collet-Serra. Alone was a perfect cat and mouse thriller, now teaming up with the hands of legendary Kevin Williamson for a COVID based slasher.
Now I haven't dove into the COVID pool of films, but the intro to this film already had me at ease; a cold open with a teen doing shopping set at the peak of the pandemic. I was working as an instacart shopper during this peak so I have seen the worst of the worst, the last thing I need is a slasher villain stocking me.
Much like Hyams' previous film, the setup is very simple primarily focused on one location, and Williamson and Hyams sure as hell know how to use it. Williamson brings in his terrific use of geography the same way he did in Scream, Ryan Hollinger went into more perfect detail about it in his respective video on the film, and Hyams brings some amazing skill behind the camera. The first being a whip-pan fight scene between our first victim and the killer, just that style alone give the scene an intense amount of energy and fluidity along the camera movement, the camera freely flows with the struggle while also keeping in close proximity to the characters, on top of that there is something I've never seen before, a dolly zoom while a character is running away from the camera, that was mind blowing.
Technicalities aside the film is also a great and simple story, much simpler than you'd imagine, 3 characters and a killer at a house where they decide to throw another "COVID celebration party". Put upon that is endless chase scene after chase scene, that use the whole house as well as the landscape around it. And the final reveal was this very intriguing mix of seriousness, commentary on the whole COVID matter which does solidify the COVID framing device, and a bit of camp; which horror films seems to messing around with a lot recently and finding that right balance of all the mentioned emotions.
Overall a fantastic film that really makes me hype for Hyams' future career, may he please continue back and forth between action thrills and horror, cause he is knocking it out of the fucking park.