‘Bodies Bodies Bodies’ Movie Review: A24 Has Its Finger on the Pulse of Gen Z

Bodies Bodies Bodies is a highly accessible black comedy slasher flick. A24 Films revels in its symbolic arthouse horror fare, but director Halina Reijn injects pop visuals into writer Sarah DeLappe’s young, fresh screenplay. Bodies Bodies Bodies isn’t the best A24 slasher of the year, although it’s undoubtedly a boisterous good time.

'Bodies Bodies Bodies' 3.5 review graphic

‘Bodies Bodies Bodies’ follows a hurricane party that goes terribly wrong

'Bodies Bodies Bodies' Amandla Stenberg as Sophie, Maria Baklava as Bee, Chase Sui Wonders as Emma, and Rachel Sennott as Alice looking terrified with distressed clothes and gold curtains behind them
Amandla Stenberg as Sophie, Maria Baklava as Bee, Chase Sui Wonders as Emma, and Rachel Sennott as Alice | A24

Sophie (Amandla Stenberg) brings her girlfriend, Bee (Maria Bakalova), along with her to meet her group of rich friends during a hurricane party at a remote mansion. However, there’s an underlying tension that continues to build among them. The group parties with alcohol and drugs in tow until they decide to play a game, where one person is the killer. Their goal is to set forth to “kill” the players by tapping them. Meanwhile, the potential victims must figure out who the killer is before they’re all goners.

Alice (Rachel Sennott), Greg (Lee Pace), Alice (Rachel Sennott), Emma (Chase Sui Wonders), David (Peter Davidson), and Jordan (Myha’la Herrold) compose the remainder of the group. Bodies Bodies Bodies soon turns into a fight for survival as the game turns into a deadly reality. A night of fake friends and backstabbing makes everyone a potential suspect.

Director Halina Reijn taps into privilege and paranoia

Bodies Bodies Bodies never establishes any sort of a status quo. Sophie and Bee’s relationship is the film’s introduction, as the former admits her love for the latter. However, Bee is a clear introvert of few words who simply responds with a smile. The audience learns more about the details of their relationship dynamic as the film’s story unfolds. All of the group’s friendships and romantic relationships will be put to the ultimate test in the face of fear and paranoia.

DeLappe’s screenplay gives the impression that the majority of this friend group has a lot of history, with Bee and Greg serving as the newest additions to the group. They’re all hiding their secrets, giving any of them the motivation to start slaughtering one another in the remote mansion. Drugs and alcohol only increase their terror and paranoia as they try to make sense of the situation.

Each character in Bodies Bodies Bodies fulfills a certain horror archetype fitting in with modern generational youth. DeLappe writes them in a way that both captures their essence and parodies them. It’s funny and witty while simultaneously poking fun at classism, privilege, and paranoia. The film reveals the characters’ nervous ticks and mannerisms, begging for the audience to start casting their guess for the identity of the killer.

‘Bodies Bodies Bodies’ is ‘Clue’ for a new generation

'Bodies Bodies Bodies' Rachel Sennott as Alice laying on her back with neon lights around her neck, smiling, holding a lollipop
Rachel Sennott as Alice | A24

Reijn utilizes the film’s stormy weather as both a visual and plot device. It keeps the characters locked in the middle of nowhere without any contact with the outside world. Bodies Bodies Bodies is a dark movie where cinematographer Jasper Wolf is constantly working with a mansion without electricity. Many of the scenes are lit with the light from smartphone screens and Alice’s neon lights. Meanwhile, Disasterpeace scores Reijn’s slasher flick with a pulsating electronic track that is perfectly fitting.

Bodies Bodies Bodies is certainly a slasher about rich people’s problems, which is part of the fun. Reijn has a high-energy slasher flick on her hands that isn’t quite able to keep it up over the course of its 95-minute runtime. There are a few scenes that could use some trimming to make for tighter pacing, but it remains a wild time at the movies.

The greatest asset of Bodies Bodies Bodies is the cast. Sennott is an absolute knock-out, bringing outstanding comedic timing. After her brilliant showing in Shiva Baby, she further proves why she’s one of the major performers in comedy to keep an eye on. The murder mystery and social dynamics call to the intersection of Clue and Mean Girls, but it doesn’t lack its own unique voice. Bodies Bodies Bodies leans much more on its humor than its horror, relying on a killer cast and infectious dialogue.

Bodies Bodies Bodies drops into theaters on Aug. 5.

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