Bodies Bodies Bodies

Bodies Bodies Bodies ★★★★★

An Internet Satire Done Right...
Bodies Bodies Bodies.
Directed by Halina Reijn.
By Blake Patterson.

  Over the last few days, freelance critic Lena Wilson became the subject of public discourse due to the following statement: " doubles as a 95-minute advertisement for cleavage..." Amandla Stenberg jokingly messaged Wilson about the review, and Wilson's response was critical. As a result, the interaction transformed into ridiculous chaos like the central conflict in Halina Reijn's Bodies Bodies Bodies. Oh, the irony! While Wilson's controversy affects the film's consensus, it also bespeaks how truthful Bodies Bodies Bodies is. With a slasher premise in a single setting, Reijn and writers Sarah DeLappe and Kristen Roupenian examine an internet cultural crisis where self-righteous people have a problem with everyone but themselves.
  In this case, the characters are wealthy zoomers who claim they care when they feel the opposite. The premise sounds conventional of friends meeting together at a mansion during a hurricane and how they decide to play a game where the choices go awry. However, the setup functions effectively for a modern satire of social media deceit and elitism. As the movie unfolds, audiences recognize hypocrisies among the characters and how they deny reflecting on their misdeeds. The film also displays how a misunderstanding of a tragedy can evolve into a series of troubles through acrimony and angst due to a lack of communication. Instead of conversing with each other, the young adults prefer to yell and be self-aggrandizing.
  These insights come to a successful execution because of the committed ensemble, the sharp writing, and Reijn's well-paced direction. The cast--even the usually annoying Pete Davidson--contribute indelibly to their characters as they betray each other. Unlike the caricatures in Eli Roth's Cabin Fever, the characters in Bodies Bodies Bodies feel like human beings. Beneath the condescension, the main characters are vulnerable people who are victims of their privilege and how their entitlement clouds their judgment. Of the young women, Shiva Baby's Rachel Sennott hilariously portrays Alice's anxiety and how it reveals her ignorance. Each performer--from Stenberg to Lee Pace--has a moment to shine because they blend angst, charm, and anger.
  As a director, Reijn develops the tension between the characters and how they react to each other through close-ups. The genius of Reijn's direction is how the audience forgets they are watching a movie with one set during a hurricane. A lesser filmmaker would not transcend these factors, and the viewers would be constantly aware of the location. The character drama is what envelops the viewer, and Reijn builds each conflict with suspense. The technical work is also efficient in how the lighting contrasts the darkness and the focused framing. When the revelation occurs, it is a genuine surprise and satirically epitomizes the modern internet age crisis.
  In recent memory, B.J. Novak's Vengeance and Quinn Shephard's Not Okay failed to study the internet culture due to smugness. While the trailers may suggest otherwise, Bodies Bodies Bodies addresses the speakers who dare not speak of themselves. The filmmakers avoid enablement and scorn by being honest about these characters, and the movie is a refreshing experience. Concluding with Charli XCX's "Hot Girl," Bodies Bodies Bodies appears to be the horror version of Buñuel's The Exterminating Angel for the Gen-Z era.

Side note: I bought Charli XCX’s song after the movie.

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