Macabre Movie Mausoleum: Final Girl

The Witching hour is upon us once again  my little gravetoppers and tombstones, and that means that it is time once again for the Macabre Movie Mausoleum, where I take a look at the b-level horror movies that haven’t made it to theaters. Some of the movies are more painful than a long fall into a shallow grave, while others are like spending eternity in the lap of luxury. Let’s see what showed up in the morgue today, shall we?.

“Final Girl” (2015)

Director: Tyler Shields

Stars: Abigail Breslin, Wes Bentley, and Alexander Ludwig

Final Girl, not to be confused with The Final Girls, follows Veronica (Abigail Breslin) as she is trained from a young age to become the perfect killing weapon by her handler, William (Wes Bentley). 

The entire first act of the movie is this training. The only motivation we get is the fact that William’s family was killed, so he became an assassin himself. He finds Veronica after her parents die in a car accident, and learns that she has a photographic memory. Seeing the benefit of an assassin with that particular skill, he asks if she’d like to train to do what he does. Obviously, she accepts, or there would be no movie. 

12 years later, Veronica has grown into Abigail Breslin, and is ready for her final test. William has learned of four friends (led by Alexander Ludwig as Jameson) that hunt and kill blonde girls in the woods. Harkening back to some of her training, including how to properly perform a rear-naked-choke and the effects of a hallucinogenic concoction, Veronica uses all the tools she’s mastered to complete the aforementioned final test. I assume this would make her the Final Girl. Title tie-in! So, how does it fare?

I really can’t tell how original this concept is. It feels like I’ve seen it dozens of times before, but I can’t think of a movie that’s done it quite like this. That being said, un/originality isn’t the only issue this movie has. Abigail is as charming as ever, and Wes and Alexander, both Hunger Games alums (coincidentally, despite acting in two movies together, they never shared any screen time on either movie.) were serviceable in their roles. Wes as William played the role as expected, but the character’s motivations were never fleshed out. Additionally, Alexander as Jameson was even more contrived with his motivation of hunting and murdering blonde girls boiling down to ‘he has a type, and this is fun’.

The best parts of the movie were the hallucination sequences the friends each had, but with no character background provided, the ‘dreams’ felt hollow. Further damaging the relevance of the hallucinations is the fact that the kill scenes, from beginning to end, were mundane at best.

When watching a movie of this sort, the kills are supposed to be the main draw, unfortunately for Final Girl the most definitive death was the movie itself. A well-acted movie can’t save a poor, unimaginative script that's lacking the flash of engaging kill scenes. 

To read more by Alex Azar go to azarrising.com