I couldn’t think of a better introduction to Beyond Fest: a 10th-anniversary screening of Jennifer’s Body and the West Coast premiere of Come to Daddy. I hadn’t seen either film previously, so experiencing them on a big screen surrounded by fellow genre movie enthusiasts was a gratifying first watch.
Jennifer’s Body had been on my list for a while. It was panned upon its release but has enjoyed a bit of a reappraisal the past few years. Its explicitly queer, feminist thematic throughlines are compelling enough to make this a substantive, yet still fun, horror film. I also enjoyed the sharp commentary on how the public and media react to large-scale public tragedies.
Plus, JK Simmons in, what I think is, a fantastically bad hairpiece.
Come to Daddy is a more cerebral, suspenseful horror film. First-time director, but long-time producer, Ant Timpson ensures that dread permeates every frame. You have no idea where Daddy is going to take you. A great performance from Elijah Wood, some disturbing surprises, and a poignant beating heart make for an engaging, if not uncomfortable, watch.
Plus, they gave us poop-shaped donuts!