Review: FOR JENNIFER (2018)
For those unfamiliar with the franchise, let me start with a fast recap. In 2013 the original To Jennifer was released. It was followed in 2016 by 2 Jennifer, a meta tale of the mayhem surrounding the shooting of a sequel to the original. And in 2017 From Jennifer was a tale of someone who would kill to get, and stay, famous. Now we have For Jennifer, which once again goes meta, as writer/director Jody Barton combines threads from all of the other films.
Jennifer (Tiffani Fest, Circus of the Dead, Clown Fear) is a horror blogger. One of her birthday presents claims to be a snuff film. It’s 2 Jennifer. Panicked by it, she falls and gets a concussion. When she gets home, it’s gone. Her boyfriend Joey (Rich Finley, The Chill) rents her a movie, To Jennifer. Which leads the two of them plus roommate Stefanie (Lanett Tachel, Collision Earth) to decide to make their own movie.
But as coincidences and odd events start piling up, Jennifer begins to see a conspiracy against her in the other films. Her attempts to investigate just lead her further and further down the rabbit hole.
I have to admire the audacity of For Jennifer. Pulling this kind of mindfuck together based on three microbudget cult films and shooting it on an equally low budget takes serious balls. And Barton manages to pull it off for the most part. There are moments where the script feels like it’s reaching or gets a bit too hard to follow. But overall it hits the target.
There are familiar faces from the other films such as Felissa Rose (Ugly Sweater Party, Rootwood) as Jennifer Smith, Charles Chudabala (The Crossing, Slice and Dice) as Charlie and Hunter Johnson (Verotika, Crossbreed) as the psychotic Spencer. Having them back makes the connections between the other films and For Jennifer seem much more real.
There are also several other familiar faces including Dominique Swain (4 Horsemen: Apocalypse, Battle Drone), Jennifer Nangle (10/31, That Night) and Noel Jason Scott (The Butcher, Blade: The Iron Cross). For a low-budget film, the cast and acting are solid.
I haven’t said too much about the actual plot. And that’s because it’s one that would be fairly easy to spoil. Especially if you’ve seen the other films. If you haven’t seen them For Jennifer still makes sense. Indeed, knowing as little about the main character might actually make it more enjoyable.
For Jennifer is currently available to stream.