Freaky is a perfect example of how to do a horror comedy


Freaky is a body swap flick by Blumhouse that features a perfect blend of horror and comedy that few other films in the genre pull off.

Weird was one of the funniest horror movies of 2020 and is an almost perfect example of how to make a horror comedy. When it comes to body swap comedies, the original Horrible friday or its 2003 remake are those that often come to the minds of moviegoers. There was also an overabundance of body comedies during the 1980s, including 18 again and Vice versa, and the genre typically sees a teenager swap places with a parent and the two learn to see things from the other’s point of view – literally.

Weird is an entry into the genre in 2020 that gave vanity a slasher twist. It sees a shy teenage girl named Millie (Kathryn Newton) being stalked by Jason Voorhees-inspired Blissfield Butcher (Vince Vaughn). The Butcher stabs Millie was a ceremonial dagger that forces them to change bodies, and Millie – trapped in the killer’s body – has only one day to undo the exchange before it becomes permanent. The film received good reviews on its debut and has already become a cult favorite.

Related: Freaky: Every Slasher Icon Referenced (Including Freddy’s Removed Tribute)

Making a really effective horror film is difficult, just like making a really funny comedy. That’s why it stands to reason that making a great horror comedy is one of the most difficult subgenres to pull off. The most famous examples like An American werewolf in London can walk a fine line between laughs and genuinely edgy scenes like David’s body horror transformation. Weird manages that balance finely as well, with the film functioning as both a slasher and a surprisingly smooth comedy; so basically it’s Black Friday the 13th, which was its original title.

The opening of Weird pays homage to 1980s slasher films as The Butcher kills a group of teenagers with everything from a bottle of wine to a toilet seat. While the payoff for each murder is designed to elicit a macabre smile, the film still remembers taking horror seriously. Shaun of the Dead is another example of a movie that does the same thing; the movie can be very goofy, but in scenes like the death of Shaun’s mother, that doesn’t compromise the zombie threat or the drama either.

Indeed, the comedy of Weird This is what makes horror work so well. During the first act, it takes time for viewers to get to know Millie and her friends Nyla (Celeste O’Connor) and Josh Millie (Misha Osherovich, NOS4A2), making the Butcher’s attack on Millie all the more visceral. Slasher fans are very well served by Freaky’s creative dismemberment of its victims, including death by table saw. These murders retain a wicked side without tipping over into sadism.

Vince Vaughn playing a teenage girl seems to have been able to form the basis of a mediocre comedy in the mid-2000s, but the actor engages in both roles in Weird. He makes a surprisingly menacing butcher, but also does an amazing job of portraying Millie trapped in her body. The film even has fun with the implications of the premise’s genre swap, but has such a good mastery of tone that when Vaughn’s Millie kisses her love interest Booker, it plays out like a heartfelt moment. Freaky’s mix of likable and playing characters in its ridiculous concept, while remembering to never undermine its slasher elements, are what makes this a horror comedy treat.

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