By Danielle Rice || Layout Assistant
The new Hulu original series Into the Dark, from producers of The Purge, consists of twelve movies released once a month, each plot centered around the holiday of that month. The first in this series,The Body, was released on October 5 and took place on Halloween night. The second installation recently came out on November 2, named Flesh & Blood, centered around a family on Thanksgiving. Each movie follows completely different characters in a different plot line, containing some aspect of horror. The next film in the series is set to come out on December 7, and incorporate Christmas.
The Body tells the story of a hitman, Wilkes (Tom Bateman) in Los Angeles, who, caught in a vulnerable moment, winds up at a Halloween party with a dead body in tow. Throughout his night, he encounters several others, two guys and a girl, Dorothy, who bring him to their party to impress others with his brilliant “costume,” and a girl at the party, Maggie (Rebecca Rittenhouse), who is captivated by his personality. The host of the party also gets sucked into the mess as the group of protagonists go around LA, carrying the body, looking for a way to dispose of it. Meanwhile, Wilkes and Maggie team up to hunt them down and take the body, prepared to kill any obstacle in their path. Although the unique idea of a hitman carrying a body on Halloween was appreciated, the execution of this film did not quite hit the mark. There was not much in terms of character development, and Wilkes seemed ruthless and cold without any backstory. Maggie was also a confusing character who became more and more dislikeable as the film continued. She blindly followed Wilkes around and was fascinated every time he killed someone. She misjudged his character, thinking he would fall for her if she showed how much she understood him, but he exposed himself to care about no one but himself. The three protagonists, however, were more likeable. Dorothy acts as the clever female lead who guides the two guys. The back and forth between Dorothy and the two guys added some humor to the otherwise serious plot. Dorothy became a favorite character because of her wit and perseverance. Overall, the film seemed to not fall into a specific genre, but switched around between comedy, slasher, and thriller. At times, the dialogue could be awkward or unrealistic, and most of the characters seemed cliché. If you want a humorous and adventurous, yet scary Halloween thriller, The Body is a great pick.
Following the Thanksgiving theme, Flesh & Blood focuses on a family around Thanksgiving day. When the daughter, Kimberly (Diana Silvers), who became agoraphobic after her mom’s recent death, starts becoming suspicious of her father (Dermot Mulroney), the viewer must decide whether or not she is seeing the situation clearly. Her father slowly grows more and more angry and physically violent as Kimberly starts confronting him. This movie has a completely different feel from The Body because of its serious tone and quiet, eerie scenes. The viewers are seeing the situation from Kimberly’s perspective, so they could sense the fear and suspicion that she has as the evidence grows. Although the events follow a cliché horror movie format, the slow-paced, suspenseful build-up in this thriller remained enjoyable. Kimberly’s agoraphobia gave the plot a new dimension that made the mystery and conflict that much more complex. The superb acting and unnerving feeling created through production made this film stand out as a higher-caliber film than The Body. Check Hulu on December 7 to catch the next episode in this horror anthology.
First-year Danielle Rice is a Layout Assistant. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.