Red Pill Is In Your Face Horror With A Message – DarkSkyLady
Red Pill has bright colors, particularly its use of red, and some good acting. But its critique, albeit justified, of white people through a horror vehicle feels too heavy-handed. There are scenes that feel too graphic—some will also be traumatic and triggering—particularly in the current climate; however, there is an important message within this film. This will not be a film you love, it may anger a lot who watch it, but the discomfort is at least part of the point for Tonya Pinkins, the writer, director, and lead of the film. Tonya Pinkins said she wanted to create her own personal Get Out. While both films critique liberal white people, this film is obvious…but also, for the most part, frighteningly possible. That makes it a whole new level of terrifying.
Synopsis: On the eve of the 2020 election, six old friends ride into red country armed with humor and naiveté. When they meet an immovable force, their plans are thwarted and their fight to win the election becomes a fight for their lives.
Two things I’m not a fan of are gross scenes and gory scenes, precisely because of their over-the-top feel. Plus gross scenes will literally make me gag. Red Pill film has gross and uncomfortable parts. It begins with the opening scene of white women holding down a pregnant Black woman. Other disturbing scenes had to do with the cult of white women, their behavior in its entirety was almost Stepford, but that would deny their responsibility in choosing. A lot of scenes are just uncomfortable, however, and nothing that would make me flee from viewing. Also, that discomfort wasn’t solely from their weird dance or piss-drinking games, but from the fact that they are white women, period.
Tonya Pinkins’ character, Cassandra, is gaslit throughout as increasingly uncomfortable and disconcerting events unfold. This is a message more people need to be confronted with but rarely acknowledge of the internet. It showcases how easily liberal #listentoBlackwomen or #votelikeBlackwomen can trend and wind up in a bio. Yet it happens without any effort to implement that mindset in real life. Cassandra is the first to start questioning whether they should leave immediately. Yet, everyone around her discounts her worries. They claim she always does this or she must be tired. They use any excuse to turn her rightful discomfort into an individual issue—hers.
The camaraderie between the group is interesting as couples and singles hangout is always both funny and awkward. I love seeing Rubén Blades also in a role outside of Fear The Walking Dead and quite a few of the other actresses and actors present are from the show too. If you’re a fan of horror films, you’ll also recognize Kathryn Erbe from Stir of Echoes, playing Kevin Bacon’s stressed and disbelieving wife. This film showcases how easily white men, white women, and Black men ignore Black women. It also brings to the forefront the threat white women pose, as they fall behind their perceived fragility when necessary but are just as much a participant in white supremacy as their male counterparts. They’re just able to hide it better.
Nowadays, it takes a lot to believe in white women because of how often they espouse liberal views until there’s a cost they have to pay, then it’s a jump back into white supremacy. As though they ever really left it behind. This film is not a stretch because there are racist right-wing groups that do exist. These groups exist and, if you remember the hygiene debate on social media, none of this is wholly unbelievable. While Get Out was about the danger of liberal white people. Red Pill is about the dangers of both actively racist white people and those who come in the guise of woke, liberal friendship to destroy. This is a film many won’t be prepared for, but it’s here nonetheless.
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Tonya Pinkins in the director’s chair for this face-off between political opponents in which rhetoric is the least of the weapons
Over twenty festival awards
Five Best Feature Film Awards
Two Best director Awards