Antebellum Does Not Live Up To It’s Potential

Those following me on social media know that I recently had the opportunity to make up for a serious hole in my horror cred -- I went to the drive-in and watched a double feature of Get Out and Us.1 Antebellum is billed as being from the “Producer of” these films. Don’t be fooled, it is nowhere near the same league as these films.

I won’t go too far into the plot to avoid spoilers, but suffice it to say that there is a “twist”
3 which does not land. The film itself has three basic portions, two which happen at a Civil War era reeducation camp for slaves and one in the present. In a better film the segments would flow together seamlessly, but this is not the case here. Each portion drags on for too long and the connections between them a jarring. Each portion has some seriously questionable aspects, likely the combination of questionable writing and directing. The film should build to a climax which brings the audience to its feet with a hearty “Hell Yeah!” Instead, we get a “meh.”

The worst part is that the idea has potential.
4 The bones of a good story are there, but the execution is lacking. We can see that the actors, particularly Janelle Monáe, could soar if given better material. The fault seems to lie primarily with the way the film is edited. The pacing is way off.

Is it a bad film? No, but it’s not the film it should have been. My recommendation? Wait until you can see it for free on cable.

1 Even in the Before Times I rarely went to the movie theater.
2 This is why I hadn’t seen either film yet. That and the fact that we are too cheap to pay for premium channels. Yes, there are still a bunch of other recent movies I still need to see.

2 The exception is the
Ford-Wyoming Drive-In which has been putting up some amazing horror double features recently.

3 Dagon’s Gills I’m sick of “twists.”

4 We all know how tragic it is when we don’t live up to our potential.