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Saturday, February 6, 2021

Review: All My Friends Are Dead

Director: Jan Belcl

Screenplay: Jan Belcl

Year: 2021

The reason why Netflix decided to add a horror movie based on the New Year celebration in plain February is beyond me, but anyway, here it is. Straight from Poland, we get  “All My Friends Are Dead” (“Wszyscy moi, przyjaciele nie zyja”), a horror-comedy that resembles a bloody version of “American Pie”.

The movie starts with a rookie detective who joins an experienced one to investigate a house’s violent scene. After looking around the house, it all seems to point out that a party of young people ended up in a massacre. Dozens of bodies cover every corner of the house and there is only one survivor, who is being transported out of the house in a state of shock. What the hell happened here?  Don’t worry; you’ll get to witness what happened in the place in full detail.

To celebrate the new year, a group of youngsters throws a party with plenty of guests. As the night goes by and the consumption of drugs and alcohol rises, secrets and truths start to surface, leading to a series of crazy events. All this takes things out of control and the night ends up being one to be remembered, for those that make it out alive. 

After the scene with the detectives, we are taken back to the previous day’s events when the party took place. As we start meeting the party’s guests, it becomes more and more intriguing to know what happened there, as none of the characters seems capable of perpetuating such a gnarly scene. Simultaneously, the dark and slap-stick humor starts unfolding, and it stays with the movie until the very end.

With just a handful of episodes from the miniseries “Izbrisani” in his resume, the director Jan Belcl ventures into this crazy proposal that he wrote himself and that will certainly put him on the map. The plot can feel a bit slow in its development, especially after the party’s shocking aftermath that we see in the first minutes, but he does a great job keeping you intrigued in it. He achieves this mainly through the good use of campy comedy and solidifies it when the violence starts that once appears, it continuously ramps up without offering a second of rest.

“All My Friends Are Dead” lands in Netflix from Poland with the slap-stick and irreverent horror-comedy seal, and it delivers on its promise. The shocking image of the party’s aftermath that we see in the first minutes is just the precursor of the craziness and fun that awaits. As the highest expression of this style of campy violent comedy, the director offers a montage to Motley Crue’s Kickstart My Heart rhythm that is nothing short of great.

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