Panic Fest 2022 was the first time Spider One hit my radar in his current form of horror writer and director. He and his partner Krsy Fox brought their first feature, ‘Allegoria,’ to the festival and we all absolutely loved it (check out my review here)! When I learned Spider and Krsy would be bringing their next feature to the fest this year I couldn’t wait to see what their next film would hold. ‘Bury The Bride’ is a complete departure from ‘Allegoria’ which is both refreshing and exciting. Spider is stretching his legs with this one and in the Q&A after the festival screening he indicated that this is what we can expect going forward, each film he creates will be different as he explores all the dark corners of genre film-making.
Co-written by Spider and Krsy, ‘Bury The Bride’ sets up a very traditional remote cabin creepiness story. June (Scout Taylor-Compton) is getting married. It’s a rather whirlwind affair and no one except her sister Sadie (played by Fox) has met the mysterious groom. As we set out with the group of friends on June’s bachelorette weekend we learn that suggestions of trips to Vegas or a spa retreat were rejected as June preferred to take her girlfriends to a little shack in the desert on her fiance David’s (Dylan Rourke) family property. Things take a turn when David and his backwoods friends show up and reveal to the girls their true intentions. To say much more about the plot would be to spoil an incredibly satisfying revelation so let me just tell you, this is not the basic hillbilly horror I was expecting and when this twist hit I nearly jumped out of my seat with excitement.
While it doesn’t take long for the action and gore to kick in, the time spent building up the tension between the June and her friends, rounded out with Lyndsi LaRose as Carmen, Rachel Brunner as Liz, and Katie Ryan as Betty, keeps the viewer apprehensive about what is to come on this doomed trip. The chemistry of this group is great and while we don’t get a lot of backstory on their relationship to each other the heavy lifting of the character building is largely done by the wardrobe and styling. You immediately understand the party girl, the nerd and the mom without having it specifically spelled out. I especially loved LaRose as Carmen. She reliably cut the tension with perfectly delivered cutting quips at exactly the right moments.
Fox and Taylor-Compton have incredible chemistry as sisters who haven’t always had the easiest relationship. As she did in ‘Allegoria’ Fox turns in another flawlessly delivered emotional monologue. The entire cast does a great job of capturing the simmering strain of complicated female friendships while also fighting to survive as the body count rises. If ‘Allegoria’ was an artist’s statement piece ‘Bury the Bride’ is artists having a hell of a good time and taking the audience with them. Weird shit happens in the desert but I promise you will not expect what is coming when you click play on this one.
‘Bury The Bride’ celebrated its world premier at Panic Fest 2023 on April 15th, 2023 and you can catch it on Tubi starting April 22nd!
Panic Fest 2023: ‘Bury The Bride’ Is Not The Hillbilly Horror You’re Expecting