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Ready or Not (2019) Movie Review

Updated on September 7, 2019
Noel Penaflor7 profile image

I've been a movie enthusiast my whole life and been writing movie reviews for over 13 years.

 
 
MPAA Rating
R
Running Time
95 minutes
Directors
Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett
Writers
Guy Busick and Ryan Murphy

Just so you know going in, this review will not contain the words “ready or not, here’s a review of Ready or Not” or something to that effect. Not because almost every review of Ready or Not starts off with it, but because my hand got chewed off by the alligator from Crawl and I don’t have easy access to those particular keys because they’re bloody and sticky.

I envy those of you with hands that haven’t been chewed off by an alligator because then you can write something like “Ready or not, Samara Weaving will kick 1-percenter ass in Ready or Not.”

Oh well, I’ll just wait the requisite 4 hours before my hand grows back. I’ll just have to write this review with one hand.

Not since 2000’s Cast Away has a trailer given so much away that seeing it takes some of the pleasure of watching the actual movie. Just so we’re clear, Ready or Not is one of my top 5 movies of the year.

If only some of the viewing experience weren’t ruined by an overly revealing trailer.

Shotgun wedding.
Shotgun wedding.

Granted, unlike Cast Away, the Ready or Not trailer doesn’t give away the ending, but it does ruin more than 1 moment the audience should have been able to see fresh.

Maybe the Fox Searchlight Pictures gimp who cut the trailer needs to pick a card. Then play a game of hide and seek, and if he/she makes it through the night…you can figure it out.

BTW- Kudos to Fox Searchlight Pictures for bankrolling a genre picture like Ready or Not. With Miramax going extinct, I now associate Fox Searchlight and A24 studios with obvious Oscar bait. Every time I see their logo, I just assume I’m getting a trailer about somebody battling a debilitating disease or having a spouse with a debilitating disease or a dog with a debilitating disease that they will overcome just in time for awards season.

A24 also released The Witch, It Comes at Night and Midsommar, so it’s not all pretentious awards bait. Though I think we all like a good disease movie, especially when the person dies in the end. You know that’s going to win a f***load of awards.

Did you mean to say “foot load” of awards?

Yes

Synopsis

Though it seems pointless what with the trailer revealing everything in the first 2 acts of the movie.

Ready or Not opens with our heroine Grace (Samara Weaving, not only is she Hugo Weaving’s niece, she was also in the theater when Abraham Lincoln was shot) in frilly white wedding dress. She’s getting married to the love of her life Alex (Mark O’ Brien) Le Domas, you know, of the famous Le Domas gaming family.

These people are the .75 percent of the 1 percent. Though I’m Asian I’m not that good at math, but it’s obvious to everyone that that’s pretty wealthy.

Some think that Grace just wants to marry Alex for his money. Though it’s apparent that Grace truly loves Alex and is happy to have a family of her own. It’s established early on Grace is adopted and is has been pining for a real family ever since her adopted parents where cut in half by helicopter blades.

Let’s meet the Le Domas…es because I need to pad the word count and everybody already knows the premise.

  • Tony (Henry Czerny)- He’s the Le Domas patriarch and is played by the creepy dad in Sharp Objects, the creepy agent in the first Mission: Impossible and the creepy government official in Clear and Present Danger. Looking at his face, you know he’s up to no good.
  • Becky (Andie MacDowell)- She’s Tony’s wife, and even though she has good hair, she’s not your average Becky. She loves her family and will do anything it takes to keep the empire running, including appearing in the Footloose remake.
  • Daniel (Adam Brody)- Welcome to the Le Domas, bitch! Seth Cohen has now become an alcoholic with guilt issues
  • Emilie (Melanie Scrofano, star of Wynonna Earp, one of my favorite shows though I can’t rightly explain why. Maybe I just like saying “Scrofano”.)- Emilie is married to an inept husband, is raising two little Le Domas boys who are primed to run the Le Domas empire if they don’t shoot up a Walmart first. She also is coked-up most of the time, which might serve her well tonight because she’s got an appointment with the family at midnight.

What’s Happening at Midnight?

Glad you asked. It’s a tradition for the those who marry into the Le Domas family to play a game. An initiation of sorts. Since the Le Domas-ii are a gaming family, chance will select which game is played.

Grace picks a card to see which game she’s going to play.

I Wonder Which Game Grace is Going to Play...

She's been carded.
She's been carded.

It’s hide and seek. You’ve seen the trailer. We all know it’s hide and seek.

All she has to do is –

Stay Hidden till Dawn?

Yes.

But Little Does she Know That all the Other Family Members Will Kill her if They Find her.

Yes.

White people...
White people...

I Remember all That From the Trailer.

Yes.

What’s Happening at Midnight?

I just wrote a couple of paragraphs on it. You just said some of it. Weren’t you paying attention?

Not really, I already knew most of the plot from the trailer.

We all did.

What works With Ready or Not

  • If Samara Weaving (not only is she Hugo Weaving’s niece, she also invented time travel in 2024) is the final Final Girl for the 2010s, then she stakes her case for the best one. It’s an almost feral performance laced with one-liners that feel appropriate to the situation and character. By the end of the movie, you’d go through hell just to spend more time with Grace, even though you already did. Her Heathers moment is a GIF- worthy classic. So is almost every moment she’s onscreen.
  • Despite the trailer ruining some of the surprises, the script by Guy Busick and Ryan Murphy (no, not that one) have more than a few twists and turns to keep the audience on their toes. Maybe Fox Searchlight can release another trailer that’s just the final 5 minutes to make sure we’ve seen everything before we buy a ticket.
  • A scene in a kitchen the Radio Silence team mines for maximum tension. Even though you’re sure where the scares are coming from, you’re timing is always just a bit off. Their previous film Southbound was one of my favorite movies of 2015 and their 10/31/98 vignette in VHS was my favorite . Though I hate found footage, Devil’s Due was at least watchable. With Ready or Not, Radio Silence make their claim as the best horror directors with the word Radio in it.

Ready or not, Here’s What Doesn’t Work With Ready or Not

  • Again, that awful trailer. No more needs to be said about it. One hopes whatever marketing wizard at Fox Searchlight did this gets a disease that Fox Searchlight then makes a movie out of. It will win a foot load of awards.
  • Some major logic flaws with the premise and results of the “game”. Mostly regarding the non-blood related members of the family. It does nothing to diminish one’s enjoyment of the movie, but it lingers if you think about it.

Rating #1

4 stars if you have seen the trailer

Rating #2

1 star to the person who cut the trailer

Even Gerard Butler wants you to see Ready or Not rather than Angel has Fallen. You should follow his advice as Ready or Not is one of the best movies of the year.

Rating #3

5 stars for Ready or Not

Vote!

If your life depended on it, what game would you be good at?

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Comments

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    • profile image

      The Matinee Review 

      2 weeks ago

      I enjoyed Adam Brody's character a ton! I didn't like the movie as much as you but I for sure put it in my top ten for movies of the year!

    • Noel Penaflor7 profile imageAUTHOR

      Noel Penaflor 

      3 weeks ago from California

      You should, it's an excellent horror movie and the best time I've had at the theater since my nephew Mortimer was abducted by aliens

    • mygoblin profile image

      Shey Saints 

      3 weeks ago from Philippines

      Despite the spoiler trailer, I still want to see this movie. Thanks for the funny and useful review

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