HIFF’s The Invitation Review

The Invitation is a horror thriller about a dinner party in Los Angeles that unexpectedly turns into a murder fest. It follows Will, an ex husband to Eden who two years following the death of their son gets invited to a dinner party with old friends. After discovering how Eden has spent the last two years of her life grieving over her son, Will becomes suspicious of the dinner host’s true intentions. I think the story line was dragged on for longer than it needed to be, and the movie was overall slow until the last half hour. During the climax however, the story became extremely intense, and I could hear gasps throughout the audience during the suspenseful moments. Each character was vaguely introduced throughout the film and the only character development I saw was with Will and Eden. The camera follows Will for a majority of the time as he roams through the house and the audience is able to understand why his suspicions are rising for example with the open bottle of pills in the drawer as well as the bars on all the windows.

Both the girl that I viewed the movie with and I had originally thought this movie would be a knockoff to the movie You’re Next, but were presently surprised with how the film played off. The idea that when mourning the death of a loved one can be fixed by murdering others was a new idea that I had never seen before in another films. Each murder that took place served a purpose and with the twist ending, I was left shocked at how every expectation I had had about the movie was proven wrong. Although I was somewhat disappointed with the beginning half of the movie, the ending really saved it. I would definitely recommend this film to any person who enjoys suspenseful thrillers with twist endings.

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