Written by: Daniel Hadley
Directed by: Menhaj Huda
Cast: Jacob Anderson, Sophie Stuckey, Jessica Barden
Okay so stop me when you’ve heard this plot before: a group of teenagers break into an abandoned building to have a party and are slowly picked off by… I’ll just stop there because no doubt you could name ten other movies with that exact premise. Comedown, while not without a few merits is just too derivative to be memorable, and while it’s competently acted and directed you’ll more than likely forget about this movie soon after you’ve seen it.
Aside from its familiar plot this films suffers from what a lot of British horrors movies seem to fall victim to and that’s unlikeable characters. I can’t stress this enough, if your core group of characters are a bunch of thuggish hooligans and continue to act like thuggish hooligans throughout the entire course of the movie, then I’m not going to care when they are killed off and that sucks any tension or sense of dread right out of the movie.
All that being said I didn’t hate this movie, it was enjoyable enough. A couple of the kills were well staged and it had a pretty decent ending, nothing groundbreaking but I certainly didn’t see it coming. The plot kicks off when a group of friends are asked to set up an antenna to broadcast a pirate radio station in an abandoned tower block, so they get as much alcohol and drugs as they can carry and make a party out of it, but when one of the group goes missing it becomes clear they are not alone.
Now you don’t always need an original plot to make a good horror movie, but you do need someone to root for. The lead here is played by Jacob Anderson (who you may recognize as Grey Worm from season three and four of Game of Thrones) and he does a good job with the material he’s given. His character Lloyd leads the trip into the aforementioned abandoned Tower block and it’s his girlfriend who disappears. He would probably have handled the situation a lot better had he not been handed a beer spiked with copious amounts of speed by his so called friend Jason (played by Adam Deacon), who is the kind of alpha male, ultra-aggressive thug that seems to populate most of the direct to DVD “Hoodie Horror” offerings from the UK these days. Attack the Block proved that these kind of characters can work if they are given time and a chance to grow and develop throughout the film. Sadly that never happens in Comedown.
The killer makes for an imposing villain and lays waste to the teen trespassers with various power tools and blunt objects. He uses enough variety that it kept me guessing as to what he would use next to slice, bludgeon or impale his impending victims with. And as mentioned above some of the kills are well staged, one involving a nail gun was particularly cringe worthy and for all my complaints about unlikeable characters, by the end I did want to see Lloyd reunited with his girlfriend, and things do get pretty tense in the final act despite some pretty bad green screening.
So in summary, this movie did have its moments and it was by no means a chore to sit through, with a few tweaks I could have bumped the rating up a couple of notches but as its stands it’s a fairly average slasher flick with a pretty forgettable plot.