Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Fantasy Island

I'll give some credit to Blumhouse's Fantasy Island which kept me engaged longer than I expected. The film adapts the 70s television series of the same name into a modern horror film. Like on the show, guests are invited to the island to experience their deepest fantasies, only on this island there's something far darker lurking under the surface.

The guests who Mr. Roarke (Michael Peña) invites to the island include a woman (Lucy Hale) craving revenge on a childhood bully (Portia Doubleday), a pair of step-brothers (Ryan Hansen and Jimmy O. Yang) looking to live the rich life, a cop (Austin Stowell) who wants to be a soldier, and Maggie Q as a woman looking to rectify her biggest regret.

While far from great, the first-two thirds of the film in which the guests arrive, begin their fantasies, and then see them take dark turns, kept my interest. Then comes the film's first big twist which awkwardly reestablishes the guests' connection to each other causing events to start spiraling out of control.

Where the movie gets into further trouble is the final twist which invalidates several scenes of the film including both character motivations and plot as Fantasy Island crashes and burns into a flaming mess. The film is available on DVD, Blu-ray, and is currently streaming on several platforms. I watched the unrated version of the film rather than the cut for theatrical release, but saw little reason for this film to have multiple cuts (unless one ended at the one-hour which would mercifully save audiences from the train wreck which follows).

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