Honeymoon (2014)

honeymoon poster 2014 movie
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 7/10

Cast holds the movie together, cringworthy moments

Gives away the story early in the movie, should have been more of a mystery

Movie Info

Movie Name:   Honeymoon

Studio:   Fewlas Entertainment

Genre(s):   Horror/Mystery/Suspense

Release Date(s):   March 7, 2014 (South by Southwest)/September 12, 2014 (US)

MPAA Rating:   R

honeymoon bea paul lake rose lelsie harry treadaway

We really should have just taken a cruise to the Bahamas

Bea (Rose Leslie) and Paul (Harry Treadaway) are a newly married couple kicking off their union by travelling to the lakeside summer home of Bea’s family for their honeymoon. When Paul and Bea encounter a former “friend” of Bea named Will (Ben Huber) and his wife Annie (Hanna Brown), strange things begin to happen. Bea seems to change overnight when he finds her naked and sleepwalking through the woods and Paul begins to suspect that Bea’s relationship with Will isn’t everything she let on to believe. Bea seems to have changed into a different person, and Paul’s about to find out how different.

Written and directed by Leigh Janiak (with additional writing by Phil Graziadei), Honeymoon is a horror mystery thriller. The movie premiered at South by Southwest and received mostly positive reviews while gaining a small cult following.

Honeymoon has been hanging out in that limbo land of “I should watch” for a while. I had heard good things about the movie and the film received strong buzz on “best of” lists of recent horror. Checking out Honeymoon, I was both pleasantly surprised but also a bit disappointed. Due to the type of movie that Honeymoon is, a ******spoiler alert****** is in effect for the rest of the review.

Honey, I’m into some strange stuff, but this is a bit of a turn off…

Honeymoon’s story was pretty captivating which is a good thing. At only an hour and a half, the movie starts with a slow burn and rapidly descends into horror. You find yourself drawn into it waiting for the answer, but the answer was totally obvious unfortunately. I felt that the movie gave away the secret of the movie. Rose Leslie’s character sees a strange light outside and follows it…hell ensues. I figured alien abduction, but I kept hoping for a twist. It seemed obvious she was abducted, and unless they live in a world where the idea of alien abduction doesn’t exist, it was never considered by Harry Treadaway’s character (I realize in real world scenarios that people might not consider this, but he seems so far away from the idea despite finding slime, strange bleeding, strange amnesia, etc.). The twist was there was no twist…which was a letdown.

The two leads are pretty strong and virtually have to carry the whole movie themselves (despite the small role by the other couple). Rose Leslie’s accent sometimes starts to slip out so I kind of wish they had just made her Scottish and just had her soften it if necessary. I think it would have added another dimension to the alienation between the characters since Harry Treadaway has his accent under better control in the movie…but it would have been harder to explain why a Scottish girl had a childhood home in what appears to be New England.

honeymoon bea alien ending skin rose leslie

This is what happens when pale people go into the sun…trust me

The movie goes for minimal special effects. Despite some visuals at the ending (and one of the grossest scenes of possession I have seen), the movie mostly falls on the actors to portray the horror of something strange going on. They do a good job conveying this and you can tell the budget was minimal. If they had gone for a twist, I wish there had been more of a shock ending.

Honeymoon has its moments. It isn’t the best thriller, but it is far better than the lazy thriller that often is offered up by most mainstream studios. The problem is that the movie should have left the alien aspect a mystery until the end instead of revealing it as a possibility early…leaving to a big shock upon the reveal.  If a bigger studio or release had been planned, the atmosphere the movie created could have been destroyed, but if the movie had bigger backing, it feels like it could have developed more. Still, Honeymoon will leave you cringing at points.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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