Gabrielle’s review published on Letterboxd:
Samara Weaving seems to be at the center of a sort of reverse-slasher subgenre: where instead of a single killer goes after a group of characters one by one, multiple killers chase the one protagonist who must survive against them. This one comes with phenomenally directed scares, tension and laughs, but besides that also some smart subtext. The entire film is a portrayal of how the elite is a predatory self-centered class that feels no remorse in sacrificing the lower classes like sheep in order to maintain their lifestyle at the sign of the ever so slightly possibility of it being jeopardized. Throughout most of the film it plays out with outstanding wit, and particularly the way working class characters like maids and servants are constantly killed by their masters' neglectful fuck-ups was a stroke of genius, but the highlight is how it plays out from the main character's perspective - Grace was a working class person who sought a family, and the movie mercilessly pulls her from being amazed at her fiancées' family wealth right into the shit, with the gradual realization of the evil behind their fortune. She spends the entire movie in her wedding dress, and it as the story progresses it gets ripped, damaged and dirtied until it's grotesquely ruined, representing her fall from the glamorous illusion and into the bitter, ugly reality - at certain points Grace herself needs to tear her dress apart in order to move or get unstuck from something, symbolizing her needing to be freed from the grasp of the elite.
You'd think that after all of that I'd give this film at least a 4.5, but... Unfortunately, at the very end of the final act, I felt like it copped out. The entire film feels like it's building towards a very logically cathartic endgame, and it got me completely onboard with the mystery, the implications and the way it develops the subtext around it, but when it came down to it I just thought... Really? It was just that all along?
I use the term "cop out" because it looks like they just chose the easy way out at the very end, when it looked like they would play the metaphor in a smarter fashion, and by doing that they didn't fully go through with the idea of how the elite can taint and utterly destroy the lives of a working class person that meddles with them. They flirt with that, but just half enter that pond, instead of diving into it. Unfortunate, because if they had gone through with it, it could've been a potential 5 stars for me.