Starring and written by horror maven Brea Grant, Lucky injects a dose of originality into the home invasion subgenre. Flipping a well worn stalk-and-slash on its head is no easy feat and there are times where the plot begins to grow repetitive. The film sometimes feels inspired by the repeating day structure of movies like Happy Death Day particularly during the second act, but as it heads towards the conclusion it establishes a very clear identity and meaningful metaphorical themes.
Self-help author May (Brea Grant) finds herself stalked each night by the same creepy masked intruder. Despite returning each night to come finish the job, not a single person around is willing to believe her. May decides the only way to stop him is to take matters into her own hands.
The cast is slim, but this helps to trim the extra fat and cuts right to the meat of the story. Brea crafts May into a heroine the viewer roots for as she tries to overcome her struggles. Her career takes a backseat as she shifts her focus entirely to the impending arrival of the strange man each day. There’s a sparse amount of blood here, but the thrills come fast and easy without resorting to cheap shots.
Lucky is a film all about facing your fears. Nobody will believe May, but she stays vigilant even as the odds become stacked against her. The director utilizes metaphorical devices to portray women who are subjugated in their endless struggle of gender dynamics. The film isn’t always successful when it comes to the specificity behind the ideas and motivations, especially in regards to the masked intruder. The killer himself becomes a representation of misogynistic, domineering men. The film’s execution is successful; it doesn’t feel overly preachy or condescend any subset of the audience. I wish there was a bit more narrative meat here to sink my teeth into. If you manage your expectations accordingly, there’s a decidedly different horror gem here. It is sure to find an audience that will eat it up and heavily analyze the more tantalizing segments. Lucky premieres on Shudder on Friday, March 4th.