It is like a snowy Weekend at Bernie’s without the 1980’s-style fun. After “celebrating” or at least observing her anniversary, Emma finds herself tethered to a corpse—her husband’s. That will save her the trouble of a divorce, assuming she survives the killers out to get her in S.K. Dale’s Till Death, which opens this Friday in theaters and on VOD.
Emma was grateful to Mark for prosecuting the creep who attacked her. However, after they married, he sold out to corporate law and became an emotionally cruel and controlling husband. There is absolutely nothing fun about their anniversary dinner, until he whisks her away to their upstate farmhouse, to rekindle some of the old magic.
It doesn’t last for long. For reasons that will be spoilery to explain, Emma gets handcuffed to Mark’s dead body. As she drags it around the snowbound house, she finds all the tools, cutlery, and sharp cutting implements have been mysteriously removed. Emma’s clothes were also removed, except for the night gown on her back and her old wedding dress (to send a creepy message). Things are pretty dire, even before her old stalker-nemesis arrives on the scene.
Jason Carvey’s screenplay has its clever points, but it pales in comparison to Mike Flanagan’s adaptation of Gerald’s Game. Granted, Emma finds herself in a tight spot, but she is extraordinarily unresourceful when it comes to detaching herself from her dead-weight hubby. (Presumably, you could just break a bone and then tear through some flesh and cartilage, but we’ve admittedly never been in such a situation.)
Megan Fox is okay as Emma, but the way her makeup stays perfectly in place throughout all her ordeals is truly amazing. Callan Mulvey and Eoin Macken are both pretty creepy as the stalker and the husband. Probably the best performance comes from Jack Roth as Jimmy, the killer’s little brother and reluctant accomplice, while Aml Ameen is stuck playing the dumbest character, the spectacularly unintuitive Tom, Emma’s lover, who of course also happens to be Mark’s protégé.
It actually takes a fair amount of chutzpah to try to pull off a serious Weekend at Bernie’s, wherein a lifeless corpse plays a significant role, so Dale deserves credit for pulling it off, from a technical standpoint. However, there are just too many compounding credibility problems for it too really click as a thriller. Only recommended as a curiosity piece, Till Death releases in theaters and on-demand this Friday (7/2).