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Another Take: ‘Initiation’ is an interesting spin on slasher genre

More than beer pong and killings.

Revenge films have been on the rise and along with this, a new spin on the genre accompanies this wave. Initiation invokes the style and sensibilities of the 90’s, while delivering a film that is a product of today’s culture. Fun, clever, and thought provoking, Initiation delivers a slasher that is complicated in nature, but compelling. 

Directed by John Berardo, Initiation is a fast-paced film that grabs the audience at the start. The title card is a throwback to Scream as well as the masked stalker. However, this film is not a Scream remake, but the tone of the film will take an audience back in time. The film begins with a fraternity setting up a party and a game to objectify women. Meanwhile the sorority is preparing to attend, while setting up safety precautions for the new pledges. The sisters are protective of each other and it is clear they are serious about looking out for each other. The party is chaotic and text messages and social media posts blasts across the screen.

Written by Berardo, Lindsay LaVanchy, and Brian Frager, Initiation tells the story of a masked killer that stalks a fraternity. Ellery, played by LaVanchy is one of the senior members of a sorority house. Her brother Wes (Froy Gutierrez) is also part of Greek life, and is part of a fraternity. The bond between brother and sister is established as well as the bond between the organizations. However, loyalties are tested when an accusation of sexual assault causes a stir. It is not long before the bloodshed begins. The violence is brutal and the method of killing is the definition of poetic justice. 

Initiation features some excellent performances Lochlyn Munro plays Dr. Van Horn, a dean who is far too concerned with the school’s reputation. He is delightfully sleazy and gives a fun performance. Lindsay LaVanchy is terrific. She gives an incredibly strong performance. Initiation is the kind of film that leaves you rooting for the killer, but will also leave audiences thinking about the nature of justice.

Initiation releases in theaters, on digital, and on demand May 7

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