With a white lacy dress in tow, Grace (Samara Weaving) marries her love Alex Le Domas (Mark O’Brien), thus becoming the newest member of the ultra wealthy Le Domas Game empire.
That evening, it is revealed that Grace must play a family game in order to truly become one of them – the game is revealed to be hide and seek.
Grace very quickly discovers this particular game has a sinister twist and her new in-laws hold a very dark secret.
“Ready Or Not” is an apt title for this comedic horror film. Not only does it reference the mantra of hide and seek, it also warns that this violent and gory film is in theaters this weekend. Is this a deadly game of Clue? Sort of. A dysfunctional Adams Family? Yes.
Grace is worried that her in-laws will think she is a gold digger – that is the least of her worries. Opening with a traditional horror set up – normalcy that is about to shatter, audiences brace for a gruesome story.
Mixing humor and horror not only greases the wheels of a narrative, but the humor offers more than simple respite from the horror. Laughs endear characters to audiences more deeply ramping up the emotional commitment viewers are longing to give. It is also noteworthy that Grace never kills anyone – a very important distinction in defining her character.
Grace and Alex are a cute couple and she works hard to fit into her new peculiar family. As the game of hide and seek unfolds in its bloody chapters, two elements head in opposite directions.
The middle of the film struggles to keep its momentum as the body count grows. This is due to shallow characters simply becoming fodder rather than unwitting pawns in a better narrative.
However, while the narrative declines, Grace slowly transforms from a confused bride to an unwitting victim to finally become a pissed off “Bride-zilla.” Samara Weaving saves this film by carrying it squarely on her shoulders with a skilled performance.
As the climax arrives on this tattered bride’s wedding night (the wrong kind), the film’s resolution arrives in an overwrought crescendo.
“Ready Or Not” begins with a wonderfully wild premise, but quickly degrades into a one trick pony, leaving audiences with a choice of ready or not.