Directed by: Joe Dante
Written by: Alan Trezza
Cast: Anton Yelchin, Ashley Greene, Alexandra Daddario
Running Time: 89 Minutes
UK Certificate: 15
Studio: Image Entertainment
Max, played by Anton Yelchin (Terminator Salvation, Star Trek), is in a relationship with Evelyn, played by Ashley Greene (Twilight Saga). Evelyn is wanting to save the world in the most organised, eco-friendly way imaginable. She is unstable, irritating and often uses guilt to make Max believe he is in the wrong. Poor Max.
Working in a horror store, Max finds a Satan/genie trinket that apparently grants the wisher their hearts desire ‘the evil way’. Max promises Evelyn, bated by the promise of fancy-dress sex, that they will always be together forever in front of said item. The major issue is that Max is getting ready to break of the relationship, she is a control freak and folding away his classic, imported, movie posters is the last straw. In a freak accident, Evelyn is killed, allowing Max to get out of the relationship without breaking her heart.
After a period of mourning Max moves on and meets the beautiful Olivia, Alexandra Daddario (San Andreas, True Detective), a girl who was seemingly made for him, she’s beautiful and quirky, relaxed and funny, everything Evelyn was not. Here arises the problem as Evelyn rises from her grave, believing that Max will greet her with open arms, after all she still thinks they are together and can pick up from where they left off, regardless of her smell and rotting flesh.
Based on a short story by writer Alan Trezza, the screenplay is witty and fully formed, but doesn’t rely on the usual tropes of a film of this type. Joe Dante directs confidently and with a flair usually seen by younger, indie directors. Dante is known for being able to mix horror and comedy successfully, early successes being The Howling, Gremlins and Piranha. With ‘Burying the Ex’ he continues this skill to great effect.
The three main leads are all wonderfully cast. Ashley Greene is perfect as the crazy, clingy, controlling, undead, Evelyn. Anton Yelchin has true sparks with Alexandra Daddario, they play off each other extremely well and you really feel their connection crackle on screen. The make up for Evelyn is a wonderful use of prosthetics and reminds us of how a little can go a long way, a small amount of CGI is used to create a few body contortions, or at least I believe it was CGI, otherwise Ms Greene is one flexible young lady.
Burying the Ex is a black comedy with heart, a sometimes funny film, which should give the audience a grin, if not a chuckle from time to time. It was nice to see director, Joe Dante, returning to the type of stories that helped him make his name and hope it prompts him to try his hand at something bigger, something akin to one of those wonderful gems from my childhood such as Innerspace, Explorers, The ‘burbs and Gremlins. I can recommend Burying the Ex to anyone who likes things a little quirky, a little fresh or anyone who wants to see if Mr Dante hasn’t lost his touch…FYI he hasn’t.
Movie Rating: 7/10