Abigail Review

Reviews Films


In cinemas now, director Matt Bettinelli-Olpin (Ready or Not, Scream 2022) brings us Abigail. A slick action horror date night movie that delivers comedy, thrills and copious pints of shiraz.

After a group of professional criminals kidnap the daughter of a powerful underworld figure, they retreat to an isolated mansion, unaware that not all is as it seems.

From the get go, this cast is having a lot of fun and this entire production isn’t taking itself too seriously. This flick is just another spam stuck in a can movie. However, the presentation of a collection of professional misfits works in its favour. Frank: Ex bent cop (Dan Stevens), Joey: A sympathetic heroine AKA field medic (Melissa Barrera), Rickles: Former soldier and merc (William Catlett), Sammy: Rebellious black hat hackster (Kathryn Newton), Peter: Muscle and troubleshooting (Kevin Durand) and Dean: Slack jawed wheelman and substance abuser (Angus Cloud).

The group is hired to kidnap the titular character, played wonderfully by Alisha Weir (Matilda The Musical, Wicked little Letters). Estranged daughter of a yet to be revealed wealthy individual. A task executed almost flawlessly, with skill and a little luck. However, not long after reaching their safe house (an isolated and decrepit mansion in the woods) the group learn a few sketchy truths. This quickly kicks off a night filled with unravelling thinly veiled subterfuge while avoiding bodily dismemberment. No need to elaborate more, it’ll spoil the fun.

Special mention goes to Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad, Far Cry 6) who absolutely chews his role as Lambert. Puppet master of the evening’s events. Alisha Weir gleefully sinks her teeth into the range of her role as Abigail, both charming and terrifying as the kidnapped huntress.

The plot is pretty thin, tropey as all heck and a few exposition heavy scenes are irritatingly laughable. But it’s the quippy, lovable characters that prop this up and make it worthwhile. Kevin Durande spending about twenty minutes with a dick drawn on his face, spattered with blood while buffooning his way through this survival horror is both ridiculous and endearing. Vin Diesel should take notes.

Abigail is let down the most by marketing campaign choices. It’s a common cinema sin committed in the past, for example with Terminator 2, where the trailer and poster campaign betrays the mid plot twist, greatly reducing satisfaction with viewing. Similar to From Dusk ‘Till Dawn, Abigail starts out as a heist/crime flick and telegraphs nothing about the upcoming genre switch and bloody vampiric carnage.

However, Abigail’s version of bloody vampiric carnage is handled well, choosing viscera over tragic beauty and provides more than enough explosive body horror to satisfy the fans among us. If you enjoyed Ready or Not, you’ll dig what’s being served up here. When gore, guts and laughter is your cup of tea- you’ll love Abigail.

Abigail may be unoriginal and built on a shoddy premise, but it is 7/10 candy bags on a weekend trip to the cinema with mates or a significant other. Just avoid the basement soup. It looks a bit on the nose.

We also had a chat with the films stars Melissa Barrera and Abigail herself Alisha Weir – click here to watch.

Luke is writing short stories, screenplays and film reviews when he's not at the day job or looking after the needs of his family. So one Powerball...