Please don't immediately click away from this article after I say this: we're doing another horror/comedy today. I know, I know. The last one I did was Yoga Hosers and it was just the worst. I get it. I was skeptical too. I hold horror/comedy movies to a high standard. Movies like Krampus, Tucker & Dale vs Evil, and Gremlins are the bar by which I judge all horror/comedies. Does Murder Party live up to my expectations? Read on and find out. Spoilers, obviously.
The first thing to note about Murder Party is that it is written, directed, and shot by Jeremy Saulnier. If that name doesn't sound familiar to you, think Green Room and Blue Ruin. It also starts a lot of people who were in Blue Ruin or Green Room, or in some cases both. The breakout star of this entire movie though is Puff Snooty who plays the role of Sir Lancelot. He steals every scene he is in and I will always give this movie credit for introducing me to his brilliance.
I could spend this entire article talking about how cute that cat is, but I know that's not what you're here for so I'll move on.
So, what's this movie about? The plot for this movie is super bare bones. It's Halloween and a guy finds invitation to a "murder party" on the ground and decides to go to it instead of watching his rented VHS TAPES?????? This movie is from 2007! Setting it in the 80s or 90s or whenever renting VHS tapes was a thing is fine and all, but why? This is a stupid thing to rant about, it literally has no impact on the movie and never comes up again. Although, I would have liked to see the first movie he would have watched, Scare Wolf. Get it? It sounds like werewolf but it's SCAREwol- I think you get it. Moving on. So instead of watching movies he goes to this party and then stuff happens. Pretty basic plot right?
The biggest issue I take with this movie is the pacing. Up until the last 20 or so minutes of the movie the pacing kinda sucks to be honest. Our guy shows up at the party and the group instantly try to kill him because it's a murder party. Then they elect to not kill him until some other dude shows up and we spend time just waiting. Waiting until this dude shows up so our actors are forced to fill that time which they don't do to the greatest of effect because they're not the strongest actors. Then when this other guys finally does show up he decides they have to wait until midnight to even kill this guy so our not-so-strong actors have to fill even more time. And to be honest, for a movie that doesn't even clock in at an hour and a half it felt way longer than it was, and that's largely due to all the awkward waiting we had to before real stuff happened.
The actors all did their best to fill time, I did get some pretty genuine laughs out of it. Right when he shows up one of the guys is sneaking up behind our main dude to ax him in the back of the head but as he's going to do it he gets is ax stuck on a light bulb string which was funny enough but the ensuing chase ends in the most hilariously anti-climactic way possible. I will keep that one spoiler-free in case you're reading this without having watched the movie first.
As I said earlier where this movie really shines is in the last few minutes of the movie involving a chase between our main guy and one of the party-goers. That's where we get all of our fun kills that you would expect out of a horror movie, as well as some more genuinely funny moments. Oddly enough, despite the actors not being that great most of the comedy really worked for me in this movie. I found myself chuckling quite a bit and outright laughing a few times, which for me is a pretty big win.
Would I recommend Murder Party? Yeah, probably. It's funny enough to get you through the first two fairly mundane acts, and the third act is everything you want from a movie like this. As of this article going live you can currently watch Murder Party on Netflix, and if you got all the way down here without having watched it, what are you waiting for? If you have seen it, what are you thoughts? Drop me a comment and let's talk about it!