R | 90 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
Review - Matt Mungle
**In Theaters, Digital HD And Video On Demand August 14*
Synopsis: FINAL GIRL follows a group of charismatic yet sadistic boys who every night, trick a young, blonde girl into meeting them for a date with the intention to hunt and kill her. However, their horrifying ritual takes a turn when they select the beautiful Veronica (Breslin) as their next victim. When the hunt begins, the boys soon realize they messed with the wrong girl.
Review: The opening seen of this film is powerful, stylistic, and attention grabbing. It sets the table for what could have been a top notch psycho thriller. But much of this movie (script in particular) is so horribly bad that it would have made a better 5 minute short film and been done with it. Maybe it looked substantial on paper? But when delivered by the cast of the film it comes across forced, unoriginal, and amateurish.
If I had not seen Abigail Breslin in past roles I would think she has absolutely zero acting abilities. It is painful to watch her deliver these lines in what is an attempt at cold, cunning, and calculating. It is worse than watching a child playing dress up. Even when trying to deliver mild expletives the words roll off her tongue as if for the first time. And it frustrates me to say that because we have all seen Breslin in top form, granted that was almost a decade ago, but still she is better that what we see here.
Breslin is not the only problem with this project. Wes Bentley plays William, the mysterious guy who has trained Veronica (Breslin) from a young girl to supposedly be a ruthless killer. Veronica was an orphan and William took her under his wing. After 12 years though Veronica still seems like she has had zero training. What have they been doing the last 10 + years?? Granted Abigail bit off way more than she could chew with this character. She simply can't play the tough, detached, bad ass. No amount of direction by Tyler Shields was going to get that out of her.
Let's talk about Shields for a minute. This was his first crack at directing and it was so brutally apparent. His background as a photographer is impressive. He has the ability to capture people and images stunningly. That would explain why the set design and the look and feel of the movie was superb. If the actors had kept their mouths shut the entire time it would have been a rave success. It has a very sinister Grimm's look about it. The shadowing and use of color are grand. But this isn't an art exhibit it is a movie. And without a strong story and top notch acting all the window dressing in the world can't save it.
FINAL GIRL is rated R for disturbing violent content, and some language. It is an adult thriller with dark themes and graphic acts of violence. This is a very sub par film and I can't even recommend it for on-demand viewing. I give it 1 out of 5 belt straps. The 1 is for the look of each scene but nothing more. Very disappointing indeed.