Blu-ray: The Final Girls

finalgirlsblu_opt STUDIO: Sony | DIRECTOR: Todd Strauss-Schulson | CAST: Taissa Farmiga, Malin Akerman, Alia Shawcat, Alexander Ludwig, Nina Dobrev, Thomas Middleditch, Adam DeVine, Chloe Bridges
RELEASE DATE: 11/3/15 | PRICE: DVD $26.99, Blu-ray $30.99
BONUSES: commentaries, deleted/extended scenes, production notes, more
SPECS: PG-13 | 91 min. | Comedy horror | 2.40:1 widescreen | DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1/Dolby Digital 5.1 | French, Spanish, Portuguese, Indonesian, Korean, Mandarin and Thai with English subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5 dishes): Movie  | Audio  | Video  | Overall

The Final Girls
, a salty-sweet send-up of ‘80s slasher flicks, stars Taissa Farmiga (TV’s American Horror Story)—bearing more than a passing resemblance to big sister Vera—as the teenaged daughter of an erstwhile scream queen, played by Malin Akerman (Wanderlust). Through a series of improbable events, Farmiga’s character finds herself sucked into the summer-campy Camp Bloodbath (standing in for the original Friday the 13th) along with a mismatched band of friends portrayed by familiar Alia Shawcat (Cedar Rapids), Alexander Ludwig (Lone Survivor), Nina Dobrev (TV’s The Vampire Diaries), and Thomas Middleditch (The Campaign). Adam DeVine (Pitch Perfect) and Chloe Bridges (Pretty Little Liars) are among the movie-within-a-movie’s camp counselors who—Pleasantville-style—are unaware that they’re in a movie. Farmiga’s Max races not only to survive the film, but to subvert the “final girl” survival trope and also save the character played by her mother, who in real life died in a car crash three years earlier.

the-final-girls-02_optDirector Todd Strauss-Schulson clearly has an idea here, and tries very hard to balance earnestness, edge and meta-humor, but doesn’t quite deliver on any of it, though its clear that everyone on the screen is giving it their all. Collaborating cinematographer Elie Smolkin shoots Camp Bloodbath with the kind of gorgeous greens and rich ambers that effectively separate it from Max-and-friends’ real world, while also belying the horrors to come. Penned by M.A. Fortin and Joshua John Miller, the movie contains an unexpectedly affecting subplot centering on loss, closure, sacrifice, and coming of age that gives Akerman a chance to shine and suggests that Farmiga has a stellar career ahead of her.

The Blu-ray contains a whole trunk full of features, including a collection of deleted and extended scenes, an alternate ending, and a whopping three commentary tracks, including a lively one with the cast and crew that sounds like a real party.


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About Gwen

Gwen Cooper is a movie and TV lover and the author of Homer's Odyssey (no, not the one you're thinking of).