Ready Or Not: Why You Should Watch This Underrated Gem

On August 21, 2019, Fox Searchlight released a little gem called Ready or Not, starring Samara Weaving (Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri, Snake Eyes), Adam Brody (Shazam!, Promising Young Woman), and Andie MacDowell (Only The Brave, Paper Year). The film centers around Grace, the new bride of Alex Le Domas, the new member of the family is marrying the man of her dreams; however, there’s just one little catch: Grace must play a game of hide and seek in order to officially join the family. Little does Grace know, the once-innocent game has some dangerous new rules that can leave her dead.

The film was a critical darling, with reviewers calling the film “wildly entertaining and darkly funny”; however, the horror/comedy only made a little splash at the box office. Based on a six million dollar budget, Ready or Not was successful financial wise with making $53 million worldwide, but the film didn’t leave the impact that many expected it to. If you’re one of those people who ignored the 2019 horror/comedy, then here are several reasons why you should give Ready or Not a watch.

The Horror And Comedy Blends Well Together

Ready or Not understands what it is and that comes across particularly well onscreen. The black humor in the 2019 film never feels forced and these moments help enhance the horror film overall. While there’s some plot logic that has your head-scratching a bit, the arc of Grace trying to survive the night is truly rewarding to watch. This is all on the shoulders of Samara Weaving, who’s a strong and likable presence that has the spunkiness of Neve Campbell’s Sidney Prescott, but the badassery of Sigourney Weaver’s Ellen Ripley. Despite being a low-budget film, Ready or Not never feels cheap or held back, with directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett greatly taking advantage of the beautiful mansion. Ready or Not doesn’t truly scare you, but the film doesn’t try to. The horror comes from the situation of Grace being a deer trapped in the woods full of hunters, and the film succeeds in exploring that avenue to the fullest extent.

The Characters Are A Joy To Watch

As previously stated, Samara Weaving’s Grace is a strong “final girl” character in Ready or Not. Grace is never presented as a perfect being and the young bride’s situation is a terrifying “What if” situation. However, it isn’t just the bride that’s an entertaining spectacle. The Le Domas family is filled with colorful personalities that gel perfectly together. There’s nothing sympathetic about the family, despite their grim situation. Even though they’re 100% douchebags, their personalities blend perfectly with the comedy aspects of the film because the chemistry between the cast is outstanding. The notable standouts on the family side are Melanie Scrofano‘s Emilie, Nicky Guadagni’s Aunt Helene, and Henry Czeny’s Tony.

The Original Plot Keeps You Guessing Until The End

As previously stated, there are some head-scratching moments, namely the overall origin behind the centuries-old curse or why Alex decided to get married despite the huge risk involved. The mythology behind the Le Domas family’s history could’ve been explored a bit deeper, but the explanations for their actions are clear and simple. The film moves along briskly and the cat-and-mouse nature never gets repetitive and boring. Luckily, the premise isn’t a thin showing of Grace running and hiding.

There’s a nice balance of story that compliments the main plot. Some of the twists will genuinely surprise you and the healthy amounts of blood and guts will satisfy the gore thirsty. Ready or Not is by no means a perfect film, but not every movie can be The Godfather (and don’t worry, it doesn’t try to be). It doesn’t try to be pretentious or highly clever, nor does it treat its audience like idiots.  The story is mostly driven by the characters and not the body count. Granted, there aren’t inventive or truly original kills, so if that’s your prime reasoning for watching horror films then, unfortunately, this movie isn’t for you.

All-in-all, Ready or Not is a great little gem that takes advantage of its fun and smart premise. It doesn’t try to be anything other than a wild and funny popcorn movie, and in that case, the 2019 horror/comedy over-delivers. Definitely check out this underrated gem if you’re a lover of good horror/comedy genre pieces.

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