Hooneymoon Review

Honeymoon- director Leigh JaniakFirst time director Leigh Janiak should be proud of her first film, it’s not only a solid debut but it’s been getting some pretty great reviews and it’s easy to see why.

CoupleHoneymoon is just that, the story of two newlyweds Bea (Rose Leslie) and Paul (Harry Treadaway) off on their honeymoon in Bea’s family cabin in the woods. The film starts with each recording a video message at their wedding, they talk about their first date and when Paul proposed, all providing a bit of backstory which later will come into play. Their first night at the cabin a bright light shines through the cabin windows and Bea ends up wandering into the woods. She is found by Paul who is extremely concerned but the next morning Bea brushes it off as sleepwalking, despite having never done anything like that before.

Over the next couple of days Bea becomes withdrawn and starts to exhibit strange behaviour. Paul becomes more and more concerned as he notices strange marks on Bea’s body and when searching the woods, as he is convinced himself that Bea has had a moonlight rendezvous with an old ‘summer friend’ they bump into a little earlier in the film, he finds Bea’s torn nightdress and some strange goo.

tornThe ‘summer friend’ is Will who along with his wife Annie are the only other actors in the film. Their relationship seems strained and although we only meet them for a few minutes it’s quickly established that something is wrong.

The trailer I saw for Honeymoon was fairly ambiguous and while I enjoyed the film I would have liked a bit more of that ambiguity within the plot. The film gives the game away far too early so I would have enjoyed a bit more suspense and play with the idea that perhaps Paul is the one acting strange.

The film isn’t scary, but there is a sense of unease throughout the film and going for a creep factor instead of jump scares. There is some gore, I would have loved to have seen an audiences reaction to a scene late in the film that has somewhat of a Cronenberg flavour.

“Bea” played by Rose Leslie, film still by DP, Kyle KlützOverall the film has an Invasion of the Body Snatchers vibe, the idea that the person sleeping next to you might not be who you think they are. It’s understated horror and in that same tradition, the scene I found most chilling was one of the final scenes.

Both Rose Leslie and Harry Treadaway put in a good performance, at first it seemed a strange choice to have two British actors playing Americans but having seen the film now it’s clear they were the best choices. While it has its flaws I did enjoy the film and thought that despite it covering old ground it’s worthy of the attention it’s getting.

 

 

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About Moxie McMurder

Mad, bad and dangerous to know.
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