Fright Fest 2016 Review #12 – Murder Party (2007)

Talk about cardboard characters…

Subgenre:  Horror-Comedy

Summary:  An unsuspecting loner attends a Halloween party, not knowing that it’s a plot to have him murdered.

Review:  Christopher is an average – if unsocial – guy.  He spends his days handing out parking tickets, and his nights in his apartment with his cat, Sir Lancelot.  With no other plans for Halloween, he decides to go a “Murder Party” in Brooklyn after receiving an anonymous invitation.  When he arrives, he encounters a deranged group of artists who plan to kill him as their ultimate pièce de résistance.

Murder Party is not a scary movie.  In fact, it can barely be called horror, earning the designation only because of its themes and use of gore.  Murder Party is a comedy before anything else, and that’s just fine, since it has laughs in spades.  It succeeds not only as a darkly funny farce, mining laughs from its most gruesome moments, but also as a hilariously biting satire of the art world and New York hipsterism.  The (slightly) exaggerated villains are scathingly believable, trying to out-posture one another and suck up to their flamboyant leader Alexander, who’s promised a hefty grant to whomever impresses him the most.  Christopher is their perfect counterpart, a largely silent everyman who’s just as baffled by these lunatics as the audience.  At just seventy-nine minutes, the movie chugs along at a nice clip, never resorting to filler to pad its running time.

The Verdict:  What it lacks in scares, Murder Party more than makes up for in laughs.  I give it seven-and-a-half homicidal hipsters out of ten.

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