“Villains” is a long-awaited indie from two filmmakers I’ve been rooting for ever since their overlooked debut feature “Body” back in 2015 – Dan Berk and Robert Olsen. After that came their decent follow-up to “Stake Land” in 2016 & Now “Villains” – their absolute best so far. A quirky, wild and demented horror comedy, supported strongly by four amazing performances, pleasant and polished cinematography & the equal parts creepy and sweet story.
A pair of amateur criminals, madly in love with each other, are on the run & break into a suburban home, while looking for the means of escaping the law, they stumble upon the homeowners dark secret. A conflict ensues. “Villains” is, by my account, a top-tier indie – an eccentric and fun horror/black comedy with your favorite offbeat vibes. The core story – both the Bonny&Clide themes behind Bill Skarsgard’s & Maika Monroe’s characters and the story arcs surrounding Jeffrey Donovan’s and Kyra Sedgwick’s characters – are nothing that hasn’t been done previously, but “Villains” has a generous amount of creative touches all over it. The romantic vibes are as effective as the rest of the story, in fact, the sweet-as-cake and hard-as-nails love between the two pairs plays a major role. Oh, and “Villains” can also be very funny. In regards of the story & flow, the second half was a little slower, maybe one or two slightly stretched dialogue parts & conventional, easily predicted story solutions. The four (only) main characters are channeled through rock-solid, sparkling and just plain awesome performances. I mean it – all four were a treat to watch, it’s not that often when a movie has four (!) equally strong performances. Also, I do have to admit that Jeffrey Donovan might’ve been stealing the show in some scenes, just exquisite. To top it all off, “Villains” keeps it all together with a cinematography so creative, polished and moody that I wish to call it big-screen worthy. Last but not least, “Villains” can also be violent – stylishly so.
It’s an admirably well done & massively engaging criminals-on-the-run / home invasion thriller / black comedy that very well fits in the horror niche as well. It remains fresh while being nothing all that new. I think – I’m sure – Dan Berk and Robert Olsen has very promising careers ahead of them & so do the two younger leads – the still rising Bill Skarsgard and Maika Monroe. Well done. My rating: 8/10.
Review by TwistedContent