Riley’s SXSW 2013 Midnighter Roundup Reviews for: YOU’RE NEXT, CHEAP THRILLS, and THE LORDS OF SALEM


Rating: A+

What was supposed to be a happy and fun family reunion for the Davisons turns awry when some uninvited guests show up and start to terrorize the group. Fortunately, for this family, one of their own, has a surprising background, and a few tricks up her sleeve, as she turns the tables on the invaders, and gives them a slice of her mind.

What an amazing horror masterpiece! This is definitely one of my all time favorite horror films! Even with this being a midnighter, I had no trouble whatsoever staying awake. Directed by Adam Wingard (V/H/S) this film manages to scare the hell out of its audience while also making them cheer and laugh hysterically. The first half of You’re Next is a legitimately scary film, but the seconds half demonstrates that this is not the ordinary home invasion film, and becomes a kick-ass and hilarious takedown of the home invaders. This film takes you in one direction, bitch slaps you, and then takes you down a completely different road. I loved it. And it was great to see a female lead who is just a serious bad-ass. The take charge girlfriend, Erin, played by Sharni Vinson (Step Up 3D) has so many brilliant tricks up her sleeve. This film also possesses some of the most gruesome, and creative kills I have seen in quite so time. A Bloody brilliant film.



Rating : A-cheep thrills

Family man, Craig, Pat Healy (The Innkeepers) in desperate need of some money    after finding an evection notice on his front door, runs into old friend Vince, Ethan    Embry (Can’t Hardly Wait) at the bar and starts to catch up. A wealthy man, Colin,     David Koechner (Paul) breaks apart this reunion and offers up a game between these    two friends to help celebrates his wife’s, Violet, Sara Paton (Last House on the Left),    birthday, where the winner gets their financial problems solved. But what starts as a    harmless and fun game between friends quickly escalates to something much more dark    and horrific then they could have imagined.

Cheap Thrills is crazy and bizarre, and proves that you don’t need a gigantic budget or cast to create a quality and kick ass film. The storyline itself is very dark and original. The script is so underplayed that the place it takes you to, becomes even more shocking and real. There is a scene that didn’t even involve blood where I physically had to look away, I never look away. It takes craftsmanship to cause people to turn away in horror without a great deal of blood guts and gore. A major part of this bizarre film is its great cast. Paxton and Koechner make for the most unlikely and perfect psycho oddball team while Embry and Healy form a believable relationship that the audience gets to have fun watching as it is slowly torn apart. The only problem I had with the film was finding the ending believable.



Rating: I didn’t enjoy it, BUT hardcore Zombie fans will find it interesting.

Salem Massachusetts’s late night radio host, Hedi, Sheri Moon Zombie, (The Devils Rejects), is sent a mysterious and eerie record of the even more mysterious and unknown band called “The Lords”. After listening to the extremely creepy song, Hedi slowly starts to drift deeper into a world where the demonic reign. Can Heidi break away from this song’s hypnotic spell, before she is in too deep and evil gets unleashed on Salem?

Midnight screenings and I do not get along. With absolutely zero energy, I forced myself to the theatre because I have enjoyed some of Rob Zombies previous films, like Devils Rejects. Before the start of the film, Zombie came out to introduce The Lords of Salem and warned the audience that they would either absolutely love it or hate it. Sad to say, but I did not fall into the “loved it” category; this film is just not my cup of tea. I slept through most of it, only to wake up occasionally to the loud sound of instrumental banging and to the sight of naked old ladies or other bizarre sights. For the parts I was awake for, I can honestly say that I had little to no idea as to what was going on. This film gave me a glimpse into what it would be like take a bad trip on acid. Lords of Salem did, however, have some visually striking shots, especially at the end.the-lords-of-salem-2



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