(from IMDB) Tragedy Girls, a twist on the slasher genre following two death-obsessed teenage girls who use their online show about real-life tragedies to send their small mid-western town into a frenzy and cement their legacy as modern horror legends.
Tragedy Girls is a Horror Comedy crossed with a high school drama. The chemistry between the two main characters was amazing and worth the price of admission on it’s own, but the way the horror and comedy are woven together are what truly make this movie great. It is gory, and typically I don’t like gore, but the director did an amazing job of making me not feel it’s impact. This is a must see for anyone not immediately put off by blood.
The Chemistry between the leads
The two stars of the film are Brianna Hildebrand (Negasonic Teenage Warhead in Deadpool) and Alexandra Shipp (Storm in the X Men movies). Watching the film, the chemistry between the two is immediately evident. They felt like real best friends and, though they are serial killers, they still deal with the typical teenage girl issues. In the middle of their killing spree they also have to face a rivalry with the cheer captain, ex-boyfriends, new crushes, and drama within their own relationship when outside factors start to test their bond. The way the girls navigate these scenes and their interactions with each other made it clear that their connection went beyond the screen.
After the film, during the Q&A with director Tyler MacIntyre, the natural chemistry was addressed. Apparently, the actresses became friends during the comic circuits promoting their Marvel comics roles. Tyler was able to capitalize on their friendship when directing the film and that clear chemistry is one of the many things that makes this movie so great.
Heavy Dramatic Irony
Another element of this film that really makes it special is the amazing use of dramatic irony. It reminded me of Tucker and Dale vs Evil in the sense that we, and the leads, know what is happening but the rest of the characters are completely clueless. In this movie, the girls interactions with their parents were some of the best moments. After an extremely violent and bloody scene involving the girls, they go home and their parents give them a hard time about being out late or question if they’re doing their homework. The interactions with their family remind you that they are still kids with parents who care about them. We know that the girls are murderous psychopaths but to their parents they’re still their little girls. They have no idea what their daughters are doing and probably wouldn’t believe they were capable of them if they were told. There is a scene at the end that truly captures this dynamic and again, is a big part of what makes this film special in my eyes.
Use of Social Media
The girls want to be famous. And they’ve decided their senior year is the time to make it happen. They’ve been covering the murders of the local serial killer on their blog/FB/Twitter page but have not generated much traffic. They eventually decide to go on their own killing spree and frame the local serial killer so as to continue with their (otherwise) normal lives. They continue to write about the murders on their “Tragedy Girls” social media pages but despite the “first on the scene” coverage they struggle to gain traction which only motivates them to go further.
The writers show a great understanding of social media, what goes viral, what accounts are popular, the way kids use social media, and the way your social media following is used as a symbol of social status. I have seen a few other films try to do this but I think Tragedy Girls is the first I’ve seen to truly make it work within the context of their film.
Potential for a Sequel?
Without saying too much the closing scenes of the movie do set the table for a potential sequel. I immediately felt this back in March and have watched closely as more people have been able to see the film. The reviews are glowing (currently still at 85% on Rotten Tomatoes) and if it doesn’t start to get a wider release (I’m dying to see it come to South Carolina) I could still see it gaining a cult status and the traction continuing even after the theatrical run is over.
Recently the idea of a sequel has been discussed in interviews and it sounds like a very strong possibility. If there is a sequel I do think it has the potential to be just as good, if not better and at the very least will bring more people back to where it all started.
I mentioned earlier that I’m not a fan of gore. I am not the squeamish type at all but I do believe there is a line between just enough and too much. I personally feel like Tragedy Girls toes that line well. Any time there is an extremely bloody or gory scene, the director immediately undercut that scene with comedy. There is only one scene where I think that the violence really hit me and stuck with me and it is because of that particular scene that I had to give the movie a 4.5/5 instead of a 5 in my original review. The scene is near the end of the movie and I won’t spoil it but I can imagine there will be some people who will not approve of the way things play out.
I went in concerned about the level of gore. The first scene set the tone of the film: teenage girls being teenage girls, humor without being parody, and heavy gore without crossing the line. The two lead actresses were amazing. This film really hit all of the marks. As I said I rated this movie a 4.5 instead of 5 but I really want to give it the full 5. It’s a fun ride with laughs throughout and an amazingly morbid ending that quickly shifts into more laughter to end the film.
I’m rating this as a “really good movie” on the Bibs Scale. See the trailer below: