After swapping bodies with a deranged serial killer, a young girl in high school discovers she has less than 24 hours before the change becomes permanent.
Blumhouse has just as many misses as it does hits (maybe more, actually), but at least they take risks and get creative.
And that's what they did again with "Freaky," a slasher-style, gender-bending body-swap of a flick (think "Freaky Friday the 13th" as star Kathryn Newton described it), which allows for all sorts of comedic if obvious, moments. It's all still funny due to the cast, with Vince Vaughn hamming it up as a teenaged girl while Newton gets to slash her way through her high school's bullies.
However, as with 2013's remake of "Carrie" starring Chloë Grace Moretz, Newton is far too pretty even in pre-swap mode to be the butt of so much derision in high school. In early scenes when her voiceover explains that her dowdy self is not very popular; well, that's just not very believable.
But all that ends quickly as the gimmick of this movie is the swap and its aftermath. Both Vaughn and Newton do a great job post-swap, although Newton isn't given much more to do than scowl. But Vaughn has more lines and screen time and certainly gets to interact more with an entertaining supporting cast including Celeste O'Connor and especially Misha Osherovich. There's also a complication with police chasing after our heroine in Vaughn's body while the Butcher gets to move about freely as Newton, but these extended sequences only slow the pace; some editing down to a tight 90 minutes was advisable.
But given all the talent onscreen "Freaky" ends up being something akin to "An American Werewolf in London," in that it embodies its "Comedy/Horror" descriptor well. But know that as funny as "Freaky" is, it can be equally gory. In fact, the first murder is one of the worst, so if you can get through that one, you'll probably enjoy the "Freaky" ride in store for you, gore and all.
Rich Bonaduce's Rating: B
R | 1h 41min | Comedy, Horror, Thriller
Director: Christopher Landon
Writers: Michael Kennedy (Writer), Christopher Landon
Stars: Kathryn Newton, Vince Vaughn, Alan Ruck