Fear The Night

Fear the night
Fear The Night
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It is interesting to watch Neil LaBute, a writer-director move into the 2020s with another power plays between genders, first, in House of Darkness and now Fear the Night which will be released on theaters and digital platforms this July 21. Fans of the cinema were left yearning for more such movies by LaBute ever since he made The Shape of Things and In the Company of Men during the nineties which showcased his dive into complicated human emotions and actions. Nevertheless, although his later works after these two films failed to reach similar heights, some have been quite intriguing.

Fear the Night fits that bill perfectly. It is reminiscent of those 1970s action-thrillers that often filled up the screen at that time and are now making a comeback in early 2020s for some reason. Those were B movies alright so Fear The Night feels like just another one. Hey, all types of “art” can go onscreen, right? However, there’s something about Fear The Night that keeps you invested until its very end.

Possibly it is merely what it is based on. Masked intruders infiltrate a lively bachelorette party at an out-of-the-way site who then encircle their prey’s domicile shooting arrows through windows or doors. These females aren’t about to surrender easily because they want what’s hidden inside this house. Mainly because Tess – played by Maggie Q (from Designated Survivor; Nikita; The Protégé) – does best doing whatever she does.

In Fear the Night, Maggie Q takes center stage as well as drives it forward throughout its entirety. She does her brooding military veteran character justice in her role as Tess. Consequently, Tess grapples with addictions and personal dilemmas related to fitting in among others; besides she should not have promised to attend her sister Rose’s (Highdee Kuan) bachelorette party in the hills of California. Her other sister, Beth (Kat Foster) also comes along, much to the displeasure of Tess. The two have unresolved issues, and while LaBute’s execution of that brouhaha never quite feels all that believable, we’re not meant to dwell on it for too long.

The thing is these “bro” guys donned with masks and carrying bows are trying to invade into their house. This military hard case at least has some degree of awareness which enables her to try and foil them as she starts issuing instructions. Some work, others seem sketchy. Blood pours out freely sometimes as it did in splatter films made during the seventies or any other time when this trope was used. It sounds like a crazy fun ride doesn’t it?

And so, they have to make it through the night in one piece. Rounding up the cast is Gia Crovatin (in a notable turn), Kirstin Leigh, Ito Aghayere and bad guy Travis Hammer who keeps his minions alertly waiting for him with their tongues hanging out ready to get hold of this alleged “fortune” hidden in the home. All along — which should come as no surprise—Maggie Q delivers another powerful performance asking for as many scenes as Neil LaBute will give her filled with existential angst for her character. On that note…

It is clear that LaBute is endeavoring to portray a gender battle here with a bit more machismo than before, you should also know he tried imbuing Fear The Night with some themes beneath its surface. One among these things is that there is always fear within us. In this case figuratively speaking “the call is coming from inside the house”. Ourselves can be our greatest enemies though often we tend to believe others can be too sometimes until they prove us wrong or right therefore adding that to our list of other facts.

Tess and the other women are unaware of what these brutes can do until the number of murders rises. Finally, they fucked with the wrong people. These can be women who have been oppressed and ostracized, for instance. LaBute does well in doing this by adding some huge “70s” type titles or chapter headings to his story. It’s as though Police Woman got pumped up meets a female Kojak film with any female cop flick thrown in for good measure. In a good way.

This is also an expedition endeavor that features performances by Maggie Q, Travis Hammer and Gia Crovatin to some extent as well. This film keeps viewers entertained with lots of bloodshed and action towards its end. The mood has been captured by LaBute pretty well as have the raw nerves that were there in an otherwise tense movie. You would not really understand it if you had not explored LaBute’s earlier work since within him lies something much deeper and more emotionally powerful that he can bring forth onscreen. However, one look at how many producers were credited for this film – which seems to surpass those listed on the cast alone (even Jeff Sackman from American Psycho is in there) and it becomes readily clear why making a movie is such an uphill struggle in Hollywood today.

They might have overdone it with the cooks already found inside their kitchen too many chefs spoil the broth . Whats more, all these numerous producers could serve as plain warning that: while actors’ current strike is still ongoing; coupled with recent threatened Broadway strike; which calls for much deeper appreciation of talent and originality during such possibly momentous periods like now when creativity should better be celebrated at a higher level; there exist fears among certain individuals concerning strikes within workers’ unions like Equity that may affect production industries directly because they regulate Hollywood labor standards in America only . This may not be Neil LaBute’s best film, but it is a good one, and it keeps you entertained until the very end frame.

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