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The Blackening

Posted on the 24 November 2023 by Sirmac2 @macthemovieguy

Where I Watched It: Stars

English Audio Description?: No

I would use the term horror comedy when describing this, but I don’t want people to think Scary Movie, and adjust their expectations. The thing about The Blackening is that because of the title, it could very well seem like a full on spoof of the genre, rather than just a smart horror film that manages to navigate the tropes of a horror slasher with some biting satirical comedy. And, no, you don’t have to be black to enjoy this.

Much like every horror film ever, our lead cast find themselves in the woods, in a cabin, and someone wants to kill them off one by one. But, this is a setup in a very clever way, where they are given tests, and the idea that this was planned by someone who knew that this group would be populated by young black folk, yet it’s hard to figure out from the beginning what exactly the aim of the killer is. That’s what makes The Blackening fun, is taking this talented cast, with an interesting premise, and letting it play out. Sure, there’s typical slasher stuff here, but some truly laugh out loud moments.

With a cast featuring up and comers like Jermaine Fowler and Antoinette Robinson (who I’m glad to see still getting cast after Dear White People), The Blackening is a smart film… but Stars doesn’t offer audio description. And, I would say this for most horror films, and especially ones with a slasher stalking their prey, it is inherently unwatchable as the movie requires you to understand who is in danger, and who just died, especially while you are trying to figure out who is behind all of this.

So, I enjoyed what I could out of The Blackening, but the lack of accessibility prevents a real ability to grade this. If I was guessing, I would say either a B+ or a B, depending on how certain scenes laid out, so its a shame that I can’t comment more on a film that has people being chased by a crossbow, and having to pass trivia questions about black culture.

If you find this with audio description, absolutely go for it. It’s smart, and deserves your attention. it’s far more like a horror version of something like Sorry To Borther You or Dear White people than Scary Movie or Meet The Blacks, and that level of writing is much more appreciated.

Final Grade: Unwatchable (Thanks, stars)

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