Halina Reijn’s Bodies Bodies Bodies starts off like it will be a movie about a party amongst friends during a hurricane. The party is being hosted by David (Pete Davidson) at his parent’s huge mansion. Attending the party is David’s girlfriend Emma (Chase Sui Wonders), Jordan (Myha’la Herrold), Alice (Rachel Sennott), Greg (Lee Pace), a guy Alice has only known for a few weeks through Tinder who David is intimidated by, Sophie (Amandla Stenberg), and Sophie’s new girlfriend, Bee (Maria Bakalova), though nobody knew Sophie was coming, let alone bringing her new girlfriend since she did not reply in a group text.
Following some awkward introductions to each other, the party gets started as soon as the rain starts to come down. Plenty of alcohol and drugs are consumed amongst the patrons (except Sophie, who is sober after a stint in rehab). Drunk, high, and having a good time, the group decides to play a game called Bodies, Bodies, Bodies, a murder-mystery game where everyone draws a card, one of the cards being the “murderer”, and then the lights go out until someone “dies” and then the group has to figure out who the “murderer” is. Things get testy quick and unexpected secrets are blurted out of nowhere, ending the game and causing a fight. Moments later, one of the partiers is seen bleeding profusely from the neck. Everyone panics and with no service and no working car, they are stuck in this house with a dead body and, presumably, a murderer wandering the area.
So now Bodies Bodies Bodies has taken a turn into a micro whodunit. But there is no Benoit Blanc or Hercule Poirot to help solve what happened in this house. It is up to this group, most of which are drunk or high and all of which have baggage and motive against each other or, in the case of Greg and Bee, are new to the group and can’t be trusted by anyone. Oh, and did I mention that the power is out, the hurricane is getting stronger, and there is no phone signal? Classic whodunit scenario all around, just inside a mansion with no detective or police in sight.
As the mystery gets more and more out of control, bodies begin to fall, though not in ways you would think, and the movie takes another turn away from the whodunit and into a character drama that shows these supposed friends going at each other’s throats. The more people that die, the more stressed, scared, angry, and untrustworthy the friends are towards each other, which leads to arguments and revelations that are just as brutal and vicious as any of the killings that took place during the night.
Reijn’s screenplay is the highlight of the film. The mixing of genres while also combining horror, humor, and interesting themes about friendship, ego, and a reflection of Gen-Z culture, and the constant twists and turns keep the film exciting and interesting from minute one. The cast is one of the best of the year and they all bring Reijn’s words to life, especially in the third act. I loved the whole cast but Stenberg and Sennott really stood out for me and they continue to show why they are two of Hollywood’s brightest up-and-coming stars.
The end of Bodies Bodies Bodies really tied it all together for me and is Reijn’s best moment. In a film that has us guessing which characters can be murderers and judging each character’s every move, the events at the end turn the camera on the viewer and show that we aren’t much different than the people in the film. It’s a brilliant move by Reijn in a brilliant and insanely fun movie.
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