Watching the low budget horror flick Honeymoon is how I would imagine an arranged marriage going: forced into it, you look for the positives and hold out hope that it might end up working out, only to end up completely disappointed.
Brits Harry Treadaway & Rose Leslie (of Game of Thrones fame) play American newlyweds Paul & Bea, an ultra-happy, obnoxiously affectionate couple who decide to honeymoon in the most romantic destination imaginable: a remote cabin in the woods. Secluded, they fill their time with passionate sex, boat trips around the lake, and Yahtzee (“You’re my chance”). The first third of Honeymoon is almost entirely the two fawning, staring longingly into each other’s eyes, and discussing their future. It is as tedious as it sounds.
Thankfully, the feel-goods turn to feel-bads when, following a heated argument, Bea is found sleepwalking naked in the woods and begins behaving strangely. Paul, terrified, starts to believe Bea is no longer the person he married. Mysterious “mosquito bites” appear on her legs, he finds her coaching herself in the mirror on how to turn him down for sex, and, gasp, she forgets to batter the French toast.
Honeymoon‘s second act ratchets up the intensity and has a lot of interesting ideas, but you’ll still see the answers to the questions it raises coming from a mile away. The movie’s nightmarish final act ends features a flurry of gore that had the other people I was watching with cover their eyes, but still doesn’t fulfill the promise of the rest of the film. First time director Leigh Janiak does a great job of establishing a general uneasiness on a limited budget and Leslie & Treadaway give dedicated performances, but Honeymoon ends up falling under the weight of a underwhelming, predictable ending.