Title: Black Friday
Director: Casey Tebo
Actor(s): Devon Sawa, Bruce Campbell
Runtime: 1 hour 24 minutes
I’m not a huge fan of the Evil Dead movies so I have a pretty neutral opinion about Bruce Campbell, but the premise of minimum-wage corporate employees fighting zombies amid the chaos of Black Friday sounded like it would be really funny. The things people do on Black Friday is scary in its own right, so it seemed like there was an opportunity for some great satire.
Unfortunately, this movie failed on almost every conceivable level. The actors are bad, the characters are annoyingly one-dimensional, and there’s hardly any laughs to be had. The only thing it has going for it is some pretty cool special effects and innovative creature design. I feel bad for the people who wasted their time making cool monsters for a terrible movie.
The main character is a sarcastic slacker named Ken (Devon Sawa,) who has to work at a toy store on Christmas. The sole reason why we should care about Ken’s character is that he has kids. Seriously, his daughters are mentioned constantly. Ken can’t die! He’s got kids! It’s pretty bad when that’s the only reason a screenwriter can give for not wanting the protagonist to kick the bucket. His love interest, Marnie, is played by Ivana Baquero (from Pan’s Labyrinth, for Christ’s sake!)
She gave one of the best child performances in a decade and now she’s all grown up and playing in stuff like The Shannara Chronicles and Black Friday. I weep for humanity. Ryan Lee plays Chris, a simpering wet blanket that has this face throughout the entire movie like a toddler who’s shit itself. Which is understandable considering the circumstances, but I just wanted him to exhibit one other emotion! Looking at his sniveling face irritated me to no end. Bruce Campbell plays the boss, and he gives the only performance that doesn’t totally suck.
He’s a douchebag but there’s something sad and depressing about his character too, which Campbell exhibits well. None of the characters are likable. I was expecting some funny lines but didn’t get any. The script is appallingly juvenile with info-dumping galore, and the relationships make no sense (why does Marnie act like she ‘likes’ Ken at the end of the movie?’ She told him earlier she doesn’t give a shit about him- is killing mutant zombie creatures an aphrodisiac or something?)
One of the only ‘jokes’ is an effeminate man screaming loudly and hysterically every time something bad happens to somebody. Black Friday positively reeks so much potential wasted. I just kept picturing the characters from Superstore trying to survive a similar zombie outbreak and that was funnier than the actual movie.