Director: Darren Lynn Bousman
Cast: Maggie Q, Luke Hemsworth, Alex Essoe
Release Date: November 17, 2020
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 5/10
Disc Rating: 7/10
Vacationing on an island off the coast of Thailand, Christine (Maggie Q) and Neil Oliver (Luke Hemsworth) awake hungover and with no memory of the previous night. They find footage on Neil’s camera, and watch, horrified, as Neil appears to murder Christine. With 24 hours until the next ferry and a typhoon threatening the island, Christine and Neil attempt to reconstruct the night’s events—and are snared in a web of mystery, black magic, and murder.
Please Note: Lionsgate Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
One couple’s dream vacation transforms into a nightmare in ‘Death of Me’. The film follows Christine (Q) and her husband Neil (Hemsworth) who after awakening in their vacation rental covered in dirt and grime realize they have no recollection of the night before. Desperate to find out what occurred during this mysterious night, the couple soon discovers a video that offers a glimpse at a night of various strange events and actions leading up to Neil seemingly murdering Christine. Soon, the couple becomes engulfed in a quest for answers, but the reality of what is actually going on just may be even more horrifying than they imagined.
Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman (Repo! The Genetic Opera, Saw II-IV) from a screenplay by Ari Margolis, James Morley III and David Tish, Bousman does a pretty solid job at the helm of ‘Death of Me’ delivering a fitting tone and style for most of the tale to play out. The film also features a fairly capable (and limited) cast that includes Maggie Q (Fantasy Island), Alex Essoe (Starry Eyes) and Luke Hemsworth (TV’s Westworld), along with a few more, each offering pretty decent performances for the most part in their respective roles.
‘Death of Me’ is a largely enjoyable horror thriller with solid performances from the leads and a gorgeous island setting for all of the unsettling craziness to play out. It definitely has its moments and delivers in numerous ways, but it also struggles in others which results in an enjoyable and at times quite unnerving horror thriller that may not be outstanding, but is also far from terrible. It benefits from the capable guidance of director Darren Lynn Bousman who is certainly no stranger to the genre and leads Maggie Q and Luke Hemsworth do pretty competent jobs holding things together onscreen but it also has a tendency to become a bit ridiculous or even silly at times. Much of the central mystery may not be incredibly hard to piece together, although there are definitely enough twists and turns along the way that some elements are likely to be at least moderately surprising. Perhaps its biggest problem is it feels almost lackluster as a whole, much of the story taking a while to get moving only to quickly dwindle out once it does resulting in more of a disappointment than the mind-blowing finale that’s anticipated. Nonetheless, it’s far better than many of the genre films we see popping up each year and the performances, paired with the beautiful atmosphere of the island location and some disturbing moments and scenes along the way all help to still make ‘Death of Me’ worthwhile. I would encourage anyone intrigued by the film to give it a chance, although I’d also suggest trying to rent a copy before purchasing it to be safe.
Overall, ‘Death of Me’ is a tense and occasionally quite brutal horror mystery with some smart ideas and twists that should keep you engulfed throughout, even if some of it may not come together as smoothly as it could. For any fans of Bousman’s work over the years and/or of lead stars Maggie Q and Luke Hemsworth, along with anyone already at all curious about ‘Death of Me’ I would recommend giving it a chance whenever it’s convenient. Albeit imperfect and struggling in a few areas, it delivers admirably in enough of the other departments to make it worth taking the time to check out, especially if you happen to come across it on your favorite streaming service or premium channel down the road. While I do encourage giving it a fair shot, I would strongly urge at least renting a copy before dropping the funds on a purchase.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Death of Me’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation with the film’s original 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty great as a whole and offers a clean, smooth and nicely detailed presentation from start to finish with no notable problems or issues to be uncovered along the way. It holds up effortlessly even during the darkly lit and heavily populated moments, never allowing anything occurring onscreen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a solid high definition video presentation that should easily please fans and first time viewers alike.
The Blu-ray release features a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This multichannel soundtrack nicely compliments the tension and uncertainty within and provides a clean, sharp and nicely aggressive audio presentation throughout. It repeatedly takes advantage of all five available channels in order to send music, nature elements and more throughout the various speakers at every fitting opportunity while never causing any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible. Overall, this is a highly capable 5.1 DTS-HD MA soundtrack that sounds great every step of the way and never disappoints.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Death of Me’ includes one extra in the way of a Behind the Scenes Featurette ‘Island Magic: Conjuring Death of Me’ (running approximately 23 minutes in length) which features interviews/comments with members of the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They will additionally suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Film Rating: 5/10
Disc Rating: 7/10
‘Death Of Me’ is Now Available to Own on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital from Saban Films & Lionsgate Home Entertainment
*Screen-Connections.com is an Amazon Associate that earns from qualifying purchases