‘Happy Death Day’ killed me again and again

Category:  The Arts
Wednesday, October 25th, 2017 at 5:00 PM
‘Happy Death Day’  killed me again and again by Gabriel Hypes

“Happy Death Day” continues on the road that we’ve seen with horror movies. Make a cheap movie with a somewhat unique story and audiences will flock to the theaters allowing for major profits. The thing about these films though, is that they don’t even have to be good. “Happy Death Day” is just proof of that. 

Have you ever seen “Groundhog Day” with Bill Murray? Now picture that movie, exactly the same, but with Murray dying at the end of each day instead of just going to bed. That’s the plot of “Happy Death Day.” 

While fun at times, this film just can’t seem to find a lane to take. Moving back and forth between horror film and comedy just makes for a jarring experience. After living through numerous deaths, “Happy Death Day” goes through this montage of days involving the main character dying while listening to fun, pop music. This continued throughout the movie with weird back and forth scenes that make you question what genre the film falls into.

I could forgive this if the fun scenes were actually fun. Anytime a supporting character opened their mouth, it gets pretty unsettling. Some actual lines in the movie include: “Why are you looking at me like I took a (explicit) on your mom’s head,” and while talking to her masked murderer, “Why don’t you go to (insert random sorority)? I hear they are into cosplay.”

“Happy Death Day” just plays out like a group of older executives sitting in a room wondering what things they can shove into this movie to appeal to the “millennials.”

Without getting into spoilers, nothing makes sense about the ending. In a movie that revolves so much around finding out who the killer is and the mystery behind it, there is pretty much no build up or reason on who they picked to be the killer. 

In movies that follow a similar thread of mystery, there’s always a buildup to the final reveal. Think back to other horror movies like “Scream” or “Saw” where the ending was a moment that made you scream “OHH” as you remembered all the things you missed coming together to form an ending. 

“Happy Death Day” reveals its ending, but instead of having an “OHH” moment, it proved to be more of an “UGH.” There was no buildup to the killer and no real motive behind their actions. It seemed like instead of writing a story, they had two hats, one with all the character names in it and one with a motive behind killing. Pick out of both hats, add in the plot of “Groundhog Day,” and you have yourself a very profitable movie. 

Now, I know I haven’t been kind to “Happy Death Day,” but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have some fun while watching. Though it wasn’t an objectively good movie, that doesn’t mean it wasn’t enjoyable as you follow along with the mystery. It’s good enough for a one time watch when you’re bored or if you're a teenager at a sleepover, but other than that, the film misses on most levels. 

Gabriel Hypes can be reached at ae.spectator@gmail.com.

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