It is said that reliving your past can help you learn from your mistakes. But when it comes to wanting to freeze a period of time to stay in it to enjoy all the pleasant moments it brought, it is impossible to do so unless your lifestyle changes to a loop of patterns that reflect that line of events. In Homewrecker (2020), the main antagonist tries so and, as the title suggests, wrecks a home.
Michelle (Alex Essoe) is a nice and married young woman that is trying to have a baby with her husband. Sadly, her many tries begin to frustrate her in expense of her husband being indifferent to it. To distract herself from the dramatic events in her life, she takes too many physical classes like spinning and yoga and, after sweating every ounce of concern, she works on her laptop from a coffee shop she frequently visits. At the coffee shop, she has her first official encounter with Linda (Precious Chong), a quirky and spaced woman that seems to make a presence everywhere Michelle goes. Could she be stalking her? Nah; it’s just a coincidence. Linda asks Michelle to do a makeover on her house, insisting so much that Michelle has no other choice than to agree because she’s a nice girl and nice girls never hurt stranger’s feelings, even when “stranger danger” is written clearly on the wall. Once at the house, a series of weird events are triggered by the apathy shown by Michelle when she realizes that things are not as Linda implied from the beginning. Already panicked, Michelle decides to leave but Linda takes charge to prevent her from escaping.
In general, the film is good. It has a slow-burning plot that delivers a juicy twist with several action sequences in-between. But, there are still some things that make Homewrecker a little chaotic, just like her antagonist. The buildup is slow, even though it seems to get right on point with the plot of the film. The characters have a nice development but their profiles are contradicted constantly; Michelle takes several physical classes but when it comes to fighting for her life, she has no body strength. The transitions look nice and retro, but the same background music is used through the film even in action sequences.
So, what makes Homewrecker good? The weird and graphic stuff. Even if it contradicts itself when it comes to developing characters and part of their plot, it does stay true to its 80’s elements while adding things that are almost always forgotten like the cheesiest movies that a few remember (“Girls Just Want To Have Fun” with Sarah Jessica Parker) and board games that we wished that never existed, like Party Mania or, in this case, Party Hunks, which is an interactive board game with video that made you finish metaphorical chores before 6 o’clock or you wouldn’t be allowed to go to the party. Also, there is a musical number that will not be erased from your memory; no matter how much you try… it’ll remain stuck in your mind.
Also, the dialogue is delightful, witty and sharp. There is a great joy when a dialogue is spoken naturally between two characters, and that is present in the interactions between both co-stars. All comebacks, even though they both are credited as writers, do not seem to be scripted and it eliminates all prefabricated aspects from the film.
But, how come there are any prefabricated elements in the film if all this time I’ve been praising it for being true to itself? Well, it may be a film that was made from the heart but it can’t be denied that it is a mix of many themes and plots that turns the outcome into a sort of a cliché rather than an original piece.
Homewrecker (2019) is a nightmare dressed as a dark comedy; it’s a party with some troubling play of events. It will make the audience question their nostalgia and will put them to the test while deciding if living in the past is better than moving on into the unknown and confronting the challenges ahead. Or, it will make some question themselves “why am I so damn nice?” while revisiting several situations in which they could’ve ended up abducted by an unstable person with questionable ethics.