Ready or Not

HORROR COMEDY; 1hr 35min

STARRING: Samara Weaving, Mark O’Brien, Adam Brody, Andie MacDowell, Henry Czerny

Damned—great: Weaving

The Le Domas gaming family is filthy rich and fruitcake nutty. From humble beginnings, it has grown into dynasty with a tradition that whoever joins its ranks must play an arbitrary initiation game. For the unwitting Grace (Weaving), brand-new bride of previously estranged Alex Le Domas (O’Brien), that game is one of apparently innocuous but actually homicidal Hide and Seek, played on her wedding night at the family house of horrors. Its sole aim is that Grace must die, either by gunshot, axe or crossbow, depending on whichever lunatic Le Domas finds her first.


What on earth could be the motive? Why, hard, cold cash, of course: the deranged arrangement comes courtesy of a long-standing financial pact. If Grace isn’t dead at daybreak, the superstitious fam firmly believes it’ll be for it. (Leading the wolf pack are Czerny and MacDowell as Alex’s messianic folks, Brody as his boozy brother, Melanie Scrofano as his cokehead sis and Nicky Guadagni as his gargoyle aunt. What a crew.)


Since their mass extinction would be no loss to humanity, the only cause that counts at this party is how much snap, crackle and pop directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett bring to it—and bring it they do, with gouts of gallows humour and a grisly velocity of which Grace cops the lioness’s share. The cursed bride is shot at, sliced up and banged about while being frightened witless, all of which Weaving handles like a champ. Until they lose it completely, the family members’ main claim to fame is to bicker and bark expletives when things go wrong. Grace, meanwhile, runs rings around them all. She’s a one-woman firestorm, blazing her way through a crumbling house of cards.

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