Plot: A horror adaptation of the popular ’70s TV show about a magical island resort – Fantasy Island.
Director: Jeff Wadlow
Starring: Maggie Q, Michael Pena, Lucy Hale
2020 hadn’t started off well with the disappointing The Grudge and The Turning both coming out in quick succession, which meant that I didn’t go into Fantasy Island, with a great deal of confidence, but maybe it’s because I’ve never watched the TV show it stems from, or maybe it’s because my exceptions, but I actually ended up finding receiving a large amount of enjoyment from this fantasy/horror.
Fantasy Island will not win any Oscars but manages to win you over with a surprisingly diverse group of protagonists, beautiful cinematography and a mixture of action sequences, fantasy elements and a comedic tone perfect for a film that doesn’t take itself too seriously. But what most surprised me is the amount of development given to each character, which in turn gave the film more heart and emotion than by right deserved to have.
Sadly, it’s horror elements that let the film down, as the location is too beautiful to be spooky and even the use of jump scares, “zombies” and some a touch of Saw, were enough to scare the viewer, overall feeling closer in tone to a quirky adventure fantasy like Aquaman or Shazam!. plus the number of twists and turns can leave you a little confused about what’s going on and makes the antagonist’s actions seem even more absurd and overly complicated.
Still, Fantasy Island is a thoroughly fun, entertaining and fast-paced throwaway movie that although not the most creative or memorable film that if you’re going in expecting an out-and-out horror along the lines of other Blumhouse Productions like Paranormal Activity and Unfriended, you may find disappointing, however, for those of you willing to give it your time, you’ll be rewarded with 109 minutes of action, adventure and fantasy that will leave you with a smile on your face.
Fantasy Island was my favorite show.