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Film Review: Double Date @ FrightFest 2017

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After making a number of short films over the past seven years, director Benjamin Barfoot makes his feature length debut at this year’s FrightFest with Double Date.

Credit: Teaser Trailer

The comedy-horror is a great start for the aspiring director as it captures the perfect balance of humour and brutality in what serves to be a really enjoyable film.

We follow Jim (Danny Morgan), a twenty-nine-year-old virgin terrified of females, who is promised by his friend and self-proclaimed ladies’ man Alex (Michael Socha) that he will help him find a girl before he turns thirty in two days’ time. Jim, whilst sceptical at first, believes his prayers have been answered when two gorgeous girls Kitty (Kelly Wenham) and Lulu (Georgia Groome) end up agreeing to meet both him and Alex for a double date. Little does he know though, that they are two killers who are secretly planning to use him as the final piece of a satanic ritual in which they seek to resurrect their dead father.

The film opens with a shocking execution on the part of the two girls and is followed by a brilliantly animated opening credits sequences that really lays down the film’s bold style.

Double Date looks great, with its dark yet vibrant colours and neon lit environments working to create what is a visually appealing film. A couple of sequences in a nightclub and at the girl’s mansion in particular look excellent, with cinematographer Laura Bellingham setting the style very well.

The main cast is all really enjoyable to watch in their roles, with Michael Socha and Kelly Wenham being the two stand outs. Socha owns every scene he’s in, bringing subtle yet effective humour that he carries throughout. Wenham really steps into the role of Kitty with a very committed performance that sees her drenched in blood, screaming with rage on more than one occasion. She brings the manic yet believable Kitty to life by showing both the funny side of her character as well as the scary and at many times disturbing one. Dexter Fletcher also makes a brief but hilarious appearance as Alex’s dad and adds to what is already a very talented cast.

Double Date is an incredibly funny film. The actors all have great comedic chemistry with one another, especially Socha and Danny Morgan who bounce off each other so well from start to finish. Their first scene together in a pub is by far one of the funniest parts of the film and an example of just how well written Double Date is. Morgan, who wrote the film as well as playing Jim, has done an excellent job with the script as the dialogue flows brilliantly with all the character interaction feeling natural.

The film overall is really well put together. Parallels between the characters, such as the manic Kitty and her nervous sister Lulu against the cocksure Alex and very innocent Jim, make for some really entertaining scenes; particularly those that see the two dates go head to head later in the film. We also see the film successfully integrate its soundtrack into the movie, which intensifies key moments, such as the girl’s first shocking kill.

As for the scares, Double Date is more of a spoof film than a full-blown horror. There are some moments of real brutality, mostly thanks to Kitty, and the ritual sequences can make for some disturbing viewing. Aside from that though, the sheer amount of humour, as well as the laid-back attitude of the characters, means that this is by no means a scary film; though that’s not what it’s going for in the first place.

With its strong performances, great humour, and excellent visuals, Double Date proves to be a fun, entertaining horror-comedy that is sure to have you both laughing and gasping in equal measure. 

Double Date screened as part of FrightFest 2017’s schedule. It will be released in cinemas 13th October 2017.


Double Date - Teaser by teasertrailer

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