Five random strangers, after they are given the chance to live through their wildest fantasies, during an Island getaway, must work together to escape, before their worst nightmares consume them.
I doubt that anyone was truly asking for a movie based around the 1977 ABC television series of the same name, but in modern Hollywood, reboots are “a dime a dozen”. The concept and trailers certainly did a good job of hyping me up for an otherwise average horror film (if you can call it that). Surprisingly, there were a few storylines that worked for me, especially with the “Melanie” character, who wanted revenge on her childhood bully. There is some nice subtext towards the middle, about how all of our fantasies are connected and what it means to be selfless.
AND….. that’s where the good aspects stop. This film is not completely terrible, to the point where I wanted to leave the theater, but I certainly wouldn’t question anyone else for doing so. First off, the title Fantasy Island should spark some mystery or subtlety, but there is barely any to be found throughout the almost 2 hour run time. I’ve never been a fan of full on interpretation in film, to the point where it makes the story hard to understand, but this one certainly could have used a little bit. The 3rd act fixes this issue to some degree, but I never found myself fully invested. As for the ending, I struggle to comprehend what it was about.
Most of the characters are not completely fleshed out, none of the jokes landed and the tone and dialogue quickly turn this potential horror adventure, into a comedy. And the exposition was ABUNDANT. Every film needs some occasional explanation, but for a large majority, nothing happens. Characters just sit around and converse with each other, as we wait for things to happen. There are some decent action scenes that pull you in on occasion, but until then, you’re left waiting for the story (excuse me), this film’s “plot”, to kick in.
Frankly, I don’t think it truly works as a comedy or a horror film, because the tone is all over the place and you can see every aspect from a mile away. And despite seeing the film earlier this week, I don’t remember any major plot details about it. For a film so focused on trying to make the audience understand what is happening, the execution does not do a good job of proving it. All of the actors seem like they are trying, despite the poor material they are given. But hey, what did you expect from a director whos last movie was 2018’s Truth or Dare?