Sick ★★★★

Only 13 days into the year and we’ve already been blessed with our first great slasher film of 2023! 

Horror has always had a really unique way of personifying a fear, making it into a real, tangible threat. Specifically slasher movies make that fear a killer who acts as an enactor of punishment. Whether that be punishment for a crime committed in the past, or sins being committed in the present (I.e. sex, drugs, debauchery.)

Leave it to Kevin Williamson to use this understanding of the slasher film to approach the looming fear that was held over a majority of people during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The killer can essentially be viewed as the virus itself, sneaking its way into the homes of those who think they’re taking all the right precautions to avoid the sickness. And the punishment for not using masks and relaxing your quarantine rules is, no surprise, death!

However, there’s a ruthlessness that eventually reveals itself in the third act. A mirror turned onto us as we are forced to reflect on how the pandemic turned everyone into blamers.

But above all, I think this works because it knows that simplicity can be a slashers greatest strength. Lots of chasing, great utilization of the relatively small setting, mean deaths, and two characters actually worth rooting for all make for a compelling and ultimately fun viewing. 

The slasher influences are all over this as well, mainly Scream and Friday the 13th. It’s a great reminder that being a massive fan of slasher movies is probably the best prerequisite for making one!

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Joseph M. liked these reviews