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REVIEW: The Invitation

The Invitation

The Invitation
Directed by: Karyn Kusama
Written by: Phil Hay & Matt Manfredi
Starring: Logan Marshall-Green, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Michiel Huisman and Tammy Blanchard

Will wants to believe something is wrong.  From the moment he arrives at his ex-wife’s sleek home overlooking Los Angeles, everything seems a bit out of place.  It’s not just what Eden (Tammy Blanchard) and her new husband David (Michiel Huisman) are hiding, it’s what they’re telling everyone.  This is the first time Will (Logan Marshall-Green) has visited the home in two years, since tragedy did irreparable damage to he and Edie’s relationship.  He is still shaken up by it, but she seems much more composed.

Eden’s newfound serenity is eerie and disingenuous.  In The Invitation’s well-placed flashback sequences, triggered by Will’s memories of particular rooms in the home, she’s frantic and violent in the aftermath of the tragic event.   Now she slinks through the same home like Lana Del Rey with a less well guarded secret. What are she and David hiding, exactly? They reveal quite a bit, like how they went to Mexico and learned to purge themselves of guilt and sadness with a mysterious organization.   Everyone at the dinner party, which includes Will’s new girlfriend Kira (Emaytzy Corinealdi), five of he and Eden’s mutual friends and two that she and David know for this cult-like healing group, is shown a kind of recruitment video for the group.  In it, a calmly assured man hovers over a dying woman, explaining how the others in the room are absorbing her spirit as she passes away.

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