Toronto After Dark 2017: ‘Tragedy Girls’

Two teenage girls come-of-age in a small town.  They use “teen speak”, spend all their time on social media, and find themselves consumed by their various hobbies.  What makes Tragedy Girls different from a plethora of similar films is that one of these girls’ hobbies is murder.

Tragedy Girls follows millennial menace BFFs Sadie (Brianna Hildebrand aka Deadpool’s Negasonic Teenage Warhead) and McKayla (Alexandra Shipp aka young Storm from the recent X-Men movies) as they produce their eponymous web series, investigating a series of murders in their small town.  After capturing the serial killer, they realize that it might be better for business if they commit the murders themselves (and get the scoop before anyone else can).  If you have seen Tyler MacIntyre’s previous work, Patchwork, you already know what to expect: there is more of the irreverent gore and crisp dark humour that made that film so enjoyable but, this time, the focus is bigger and the cast has more clout.

And it needs to be repeated that this is a very, very funny film – that should be the main selling point.  There are moments that are so inventive and absurd, they will have you laughing out loud in the darkness.  However, that is not the only selling point.  The performances are great, with the two leads perfectly creating characters that are equal parts adorable and infuriating, the death scenes are inventive, the aesthetics are unique and dynamic, and MacIntyre’s genre blending of slasher-psychological-thriller and teen-coming-of-age-comedy is absolutely flawless.  The storytelling is a bit muddled and unfocused, but that kind of works to its advantage, because the narrative isn’t particularly important and takes a backseat to the general sense of absurdity within the film, within the genre, and within the concept.

In a genre which attracts people with no vision, it is rare to find works with a vision.  It’s even rarer in low-budget affairs, which is why it is so great to know that a new auteur of low-budget horror-comedy has emerged.  Go see Tragedy Girls!


Tragedy Girls screens at Toronto After Dark on Friday, October 20 at 9:15 pm (SOLD OUT) and 11:59 pm at Scotiabank Theatre.

For more information on the festival, visit the official Toronto After Dark website.

Do You Tweet? Follow These Tweeple:

Toronto After Dark: @TADFilmFest
Shahbaz Khayambashi: @Shakhayam

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