Sunday, October 27, 2019

Spook Out! Day 24 ~ New Year, New You (2018)

Hulu Says...
"A group of old friends gather for a girls’ night on New Years [sic] Eve. But as they begin to rehash old memories, many of the gripes they’ve been harboring manifest in murderous ways."

I Say...
^That's a somewhat misleading summary but I can't explain why without spoiling things. (Sorry.)

Horror Type...

Main Players...
Suki Waterhouse as Alexis (Scarred 4 Life)
Carly Chaikin as Danielle (Guru from Hell)
Kirby Howell-Baptiste as Kayla (Voice of Reason)
Melissa Bergland as Chloe (Gurl So Jelly)

I liked...
  • the way the movie messes with your head as to who, actually, is the villain of the piece
  • how Carly Chaikin chewed all the scenes, even the ones in which she wasn't present; she perfectly captured the snidely self-congratulatory air of the most narcissistic of self-help personalities
  • the use of beauty products as legit weapons
  • how the movie didn't shy away from showing women's capacity for physical violence...

The Meh...
  • ...even though I didn't find all of it believable (from one character, yes; from another, no)
  • given what's revealed, I also don't believe the guru would choose to spend New Year's Eve at a girl's night with old friends (with whom she's not really stayed in close contact since school) when she could be partying with celebrities and Instagramming the shit out of it
  • man alive, how the first half of the movie dragged! It's only 1 hour and 24 minutes but it felt like it took forever to get interesting (like, roughly the first 40 minutes were a snoozefest, 4realz). It's like they felt they had to pad the thing with girl-bonding bullshit like face masks (ALSO unbelievable bc the gals showed up to the little shindig all dressed up for NYE and, dang it, if you've spent a few hours getting dolled up for a party, you wanna make the most of your hard work, not show up at somebody's house and wash it all off, c'mon!!!!!)
  • the self-help industry is full of bullies telling you how crap you and your life are but there are also realistic people actually trying to do something meaningful and helpful--but the self-helpers presented in this film are completely caricatured, which I found heavy-handed and lacking in both cleverness and subtlety

Would I recommend it...?
I mean...once the action picked up, I got more into it. But it took about 40ish minutes for that to happen, so...I dunno. It's an uneven effort that has some really interesting ideas which are well-executed, pardon the pun. But it requires some patience on the viewer's part, as well as a firm suspension of disbelief at times.

New Year, New You is the fourth feature-length installment in Hulu's horror anthology Into the Dark. (They've released one movie a month with a theme central to that month's holiday, as observed in the US.) I'd read a few online articles ranking the different films and this one was considered among the best by several folks, which is why I chose it to review. Maybe I need to take a different approach to making my selections...

My Grade: C+
Rotten Tomatoes Scores: Tomatometer=93%, Audience Score=Not Available

Details, Schmeetails...

This concludes day 24 of


  1. I'll take a pass, based on your reactions, which I trust implicitly.

    1. Merci! Did you see my review for The Invitation? If you haven't seen it, I think it'd be worth your time.


C'mon, post a comment. All the cool kids do.