Packed with top-notch performance and effectively packed with twist after twist, Barbarian is a surprise hit and one of the smartest horror films in recent memory.
When Tess (Georgina Campbell) arrives at her Detroit Airbnb, she finds that a man (Bill Skarsgård) also has a reservation and is already staying there. She decides to stay, but soon finds there are hidden horrors that are about to surface. Zach Cregger’s script is, for lack of a more apt description, clever AF, an unrivaled structural cinematic achievement. It is incredibly difficult to pay Barbarian its due without spoiling, but here is what you need to know: nothing… go in blind and enjoy the ride. Campbell is great, as is Skarsgård, but its Justin Long who steals the film, bringing the humor out of Cregger’s script that momentarily alleviates the palpable suspense.
The camerawork is refreshing, the angles adding to the overall tone while also putting you in the first-person driver’s seat from time to time. It all works to advance the story being told, one that tackles racism, sexual assault, and more through wildly big swings that always connect. Cregger’s script ensures that you truly have no idea what is coming next. Barbarian is horrifying, cringey, hilarious, startling, and disgusting all wrapped into one beautiful gem of a film, the best horror entry of the year.
Quite simply, I loved this film.
Barbarian hits theaters this Friday.