Bury the Bride (2023) Review
Bury the Bride which recently debuted as a Tubi Original is the second film from director Spider One and co-writer Krsy Fox after last year’s Allegoria. Spider One, for those not into the industrial metal scene, is the singer and only consistent member of the band Powerman 5000. And probably more important to his expansion into filmmaking, he’s Rob Zombie’s younger brother.
And Bury the Bride certainly opens like one of his brother’s films as credits playing over an old-timey love song give way to green-tinted footage of a woman hacking at someone or something just out of sight. And then to a group of women talking about the dick size of someone’s fiance while another tries, and loudly announces her failure, to pee behind a piece of farm equipment.
The women, bride-to-be June (Scout Taylor-Compton, Getaway, The Best Man), her sister Sadie (Krsy Fox, Frank, Underworld: Evolution) and friends Carmen (Lyndsi LaRose, The Divergent Series: Insurgent, Ant-Man), Betty (Katie Ryan, Tiny Cinema, 1 Buck) and Liz (Rachel Brunner, The Mad Hatter, Budding Prospects), are celebrating June’s last days as a single woman.
Despite a host of red flags, June has only recently started dating David (Dylan Rourke, In the Vault, Station 19) and none of the others have met him or even seen a picture of him because he doesn’t like having his picture taken. He’s also obsessed with hunting and male/female roles in the “natural order of humanity”. Perhaps the reddest flag of all, he’s insisted the bachelorette party take place at his remote hunting cabin.
By the time the crew has arrived at what turns out to be a decrepit shack with a rotting animal head floating in the filthy hot tub, the filmmakers have given enough reasons for any sane person to turn around and go home. But that would make for a damn short movie, so they break out the booze instead and start arguing among themselves to kill time before the not so surprising arrival of David and his buddies.
When Bury the Bride was making festival appearances several reviewers mentioned a “big surprise” that they didn’t want to spoil. Unfortunately at least one of the publicity photos released before those screenings, as well as the trailer, make it very clear just what that surprise is. And that ruins what would have been a nice bit of misdirection and an extremely effective reveal. At least it doesn’t ruin the sight gag that accompanies it.
The payoff to that reveal is, with the exception of a rather bloody dismemberment, distinctly weak and nothing most genre fans won’t see coming. It’s fairly basic hillbilly horror with the film’s twist ultimately adding very little to the proceedings. Indeed much of the film could play out the same without it which is, given the possibilities, just lazy writting on the part of the Spider and the Fox.
From a technical perspective Bury the Bride isn’t anything special either. The cinematography by Andy Patch (Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas, I Live Alone) is decent but on more than one occasion the sound levels drop to where dialogue is almost impossible to hear. I’ve read that the film was shot in just seven days so I suppose there wasn’t time for reshoots, but surely the volume could have been boosted during post-production.
The acting is similarly unimpressive, mostly due to the cast having little to work with. Even the usually dependable Scout Taylor-Compton is reduced to acting angry and defensive in the film’s first half and screaming a lot in the second. The film’s Renfield equivalent, Puppy (Chaz Bono, Reborn, American Horror Story) showed some potential but didn’t get nearly enough screen time for anything to come of it.
Unless you’re really curious to see Rob Zombie’s little brother try to copy his filmmaking style there’s no real reason to watch Bury the Bride. It’s full of undeveloped and unlikeable characters and never manages to be particularly scary or exciting. This mess should have been buried before it started to smell.
Bury the Bride is available free with ads on Tubi. Those living where Tubi isn’t available can check local streaming services for availability. And if you want to bury the memory of this film, FilmTagger can offer some titles to help you forget it.