Abigail

April 19, 202460/1006 min
Starring
Giancarlo Esposito, Kathryn Newton, Dan Stevens, Mathew Goode
Written by
Guy Busick and Stephen Shields
Directed by
Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett
Run Time
1h 49min
Release Date
April 19th, 2024
Overall Score
Rating Summary

Everyone reading this has made some mistake in their life, you know, the one where you instantly realize what you did. For a group of criminals looking for a payday, they are about to have that same realization, but their mistake might cost them more than they ever bargained for. From the team that brought us Ready or Not, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, they tell the story of those criminals and the time they chose poorly when they kidnapped a little ballerina, who just happens to be a vampire.

Everything about this job starts off normal. A man named Lambert (Giancarlo Esposito) has hired a team to kidnap a little girl and hold her for 24 hours. After that time, the plan is that they all will be $7 million richer, and the little girl will go back to her wealthy dad. The kidnapping goes according to plan, and they follow the instructions and take her to a remote house in the middle of nowhere. It is at that house that Lambert explains the rules, and even gives the crew some fake names. There is Frank (Dan Stevens), the hothead, Rickles (William Carlett), the hired gun, Peter (Kevin Durand), the muscle, Sammy (Kathryn Newton), the tech, Dean (Angus Cloud) the wheelman, and Joey (Melissa Barrera), the medic. The rules are simple: everyone is to just relax and enjoy the full bar and full kitchen, while Joey is the only one who is supposed to enter the room the girl is in. The girl, who is named Abigail (Alisha Weir), seems to be scared, but we are going to learn soon enough that something even scarier lies within this little girl.

Written by Stephen Shields and Guy Busick, Abigail is very, very loosely based on Dracula’s Daughter from 1936. It starts off a little slow, but once it gets its teeth into you, you will not want it to let you go. Much like their previous film Ready or Not, Gillett and Bettinelli limit the setting to pretty much one location, which is one of the film’s strengths. That location is filled with curious objects and dim light, and its winding hallways and spacious rooms which are perfect for a game of cat and mouse. That house has its time to shine in the second and third acts, only when it is all over, it also be a little bloodier. Abigail takes its first act to get going, choosing the dull path to start with by staying with our criminals a bit too long, but once the fun begins, it is easy to forget you were waiting for it to get gory.

Filled with enough splatter to make any fan of gore happy, Abigail is often a crowd pleaser, that knows how to enjoy itself, especially when the film is let off its leash. Helping all this is the perfect casting, which includes the new Screen Queen, Melissa Barrera, who once again shows she can get down and dirty with the best of them. When you pair her with Stevens, who isn’t bad in anything, and Weir, as Abigail who often steals the show, you end up with a fun time with what could have easily gone into the world of silly. It is also interesting to see the effort in the world building that is done for a creature that appeared on film over one-hundred years ago. I had a feeling I would like this movie, and it is quite an entertaining watch, and even with the slow start, I think you too will have a bloody good time.

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