Freaky was one of the few films I got to see in a theatre in 2020. And I’ll hold that memory close to me forever. I remember during the pre-show getting emotional at how excited I was for this film, and then the lights dimmed, and the movie began.
Freaky opens with a classic and incredible cold open murder spree, and I fell in love almost immediately. It was suspenseful, it was bloody, and it was fun. An urban legend comes and brutally murders innocent teenagers. It was everything I wanted from a slasher film that I’ve missed dearly.
In Freaky, we have Millie Kessler (Kathryn Newton/Vince Vaughn), a quiet girl at school with her own crew of best friends Nyla (Celeste O’Connor) and Josh (Misha Osherovich). Then the Blissful Butcher (Vince Vaughn/Katheryn Newton) shows up with a dagger that he finds in the cold open, stabs her before her sister Char (Dana Drori) – who is a police officer – shows up and saves the day. Thus, causing a bizarre body-swapping event between Millie and the Blissful Butcher and the fun gets ramped to 100.
Yes, Freaky is gory and bloody, but you’re not terrified the whole time, you’re having a great time because of the relationships found in the film. Between Millie and her friends primilarily. We’ve seen the moment in the trailer, Millie as the Butcher is chasing them down and Josh screams out “You’re Black, I’m gay. We are so dead.” The film isn’t our typical non-inclusive slasher, especially not when it’s written by two gay men, Christopher Landon and Michael Kennedy. We get a better understanding of pronouns than in any prior horror film that comes to mind. When they’re talking to Millie in the Butcher’s body, they call her Millie. And later on, when Booker Strode (Uriah Shelton, and a reference to Laurie, obviously) is hanging out with all of them and The Butcher is tied up, Booker says “what about her?” and Nyla simply responds “pronouns” before Booker corrects himself: “Christ, him!”
It’s hard not to talk about the film and not bring up two incredible scenes: both the sweetest moment in a dressing room. Or the way they found romance in the backseat. These were some of the scenes I wanted to revisit the most. And now I own the blu-ray, I will do exactly that.
On the Blu-ray, there are a few bonus features that are always welcomed. There are three deleted scenes, that would have slowed the film down for a bit, so I understand why they were cut. But, one scene that would have been a good addition to the film was the first scene. I want to dive in and listen to the commentary with Christopher Landon. There are also three other featurettes attached, a bit too short, but fascinating to watch. One is Crafting the Kills, which goes into one scene in particular and shows how it was partially designed. Christopher Landon’s Brand of Horror talks about how Landon’s style is a unique one that is worthy of being treasured. It was previously showcased excellently in Happy Death Day and even more so in Happy Death Day 2U, but I think Freaky showcases his humour and horror the best. The final featurette is Final Girl Reframed, which as I wrote about above, talks about how they’ve taken our expectations and changes them entirely.
We haven’t done it before, or officially, but our site was always dedicated to talk about films that are inclusive. And not looking for diversity for diversity sake, but something that is genuine. It’s clear to us that Freaky does that while also delivering a knockout of a film. A queer slasher that just is, talking about body confidence, pronouns and brutalizing teens and teachers that deserve it. We’d love to give Freaky our first Seal of Approval.
Freaky comes out on Blu-Ray & DVD on February 9th.
You can buy it on Digital today.