October is so close you can feel it - the air is getting crisp, pumpkins and decorations are slowly beginning to make their appearances, and if you're lucky, some haunted houses are opening up this weekend to give you the thrills and chills you've been craving for the last twelve months. But one of Halloween's most underrated activities definitely has to be the corn maze; if you're lucky enough to have one of these by you, they can be a very overwhelming and terrifying experience depending on how big they are and how hard it is to get out. But what if sundown isn't your biggest enemy inside the corn maze and instead, maniac psychos wielding chainsaws and knives are hunting you down inside?! Such is the unfortunate event in the new-to-streaming services film FEAR PHARM, where four friends are hunted deep within the stalks of corn, and they have one hell of a night trying to get out. If movies like Hell Fest and Haunt caught your attention the last few years, then Fear Pharm is going to be right up your alley; it's essentially the same type of movie more or less, just inside of a corn maze instead of a haunted house. The film is definitely not going to be for everyone - it's cheesy, a little over-the-top, and filled with some lame jokes (which I found funny, but I laugh at everything) - but it's got some pretty decent gore and effects, some pretty enjoyable characters and it really sets the mood as we go into the spookiest season of the year. Fear Pharm is far from flawless and its story has probably one of the most random twists in it ever, but after seeing some of the reviews of the movie post-watch, the film definitely does not deserve all of the hate it seems to be getting. Fear Pharm may not be the next Halloween or Friday the 13th, but it's honestly probably one of the more fun horror flicks I've seen this year, with a great concept and characters to live the action. If you're a little more open minded and into some great cheesy horror, Fear Pharm definitely deserves a spot on your October watchlist!
The film is a very simple and direct storyline: four friends - Melanie (Tiana Tuttle), her brother Rustin (Chris Leary), Wendy (Emily Sweet) and her boyfriend Brandon (Houston Stevenson) - drive an hour away from home for a night out at a corn maze. When they arrive, they are given stamps on their hands which must be scanned to enter the maze, and as Melanie passes through the entrance, a siren sounds and she is told she is the 10,000th visitor to the attraction that season! The group of friends are invited to participate in the VIP maze experience by the attractions owner Hershel (John Littlefield), who says that the maze only gets to get used once a year and he offers them an offer they can't refuse: if they can finish the maze in two hours, he'll reward them with $10,000 cash. Obviously, they can't say no so they travel away from the regular attraction, deeper into the 100 acres of corn to the VIP maze where they are greeted with five different pathways they can take. Hershel tells the group they can split up and better their chances of finishing in under two hours, or they can stay together for the event but obviously lessen their chances of winning the money. So, of course, the group splits up and once they are well underway into the seemingly endless corn maze, things begin to hit the fan as the scare actors inside of the maze transition from teens in cheap Halloween masks to grown men with weapons and a hot-but-crazy Harley Quinn-type of chick begin to stalk and hunt the friends for their own personal benefit. Will the friends survive the night and make it out of the corn maze unscathed, or will they fall victim to the madness within the stalks of corn?! Find out in... FEAR PHARM.
The movie is definitely a better watch than a lot of the other reviews online make it seem, at least if you're into indie horror with a nice slice of comedy added to it. Fear Pharm isn't a Hollywood-polished blockbuster film, but it's far from bad - I actually had a great time with the movie, even before the friends got inside of the corn maze. The twist - which is the reason why the psychos in the maze are doing what they are doing - isn't the most earth-shattering bend in a story we've ever seen, but ya know what, it's fitting for a film like this and it's not nearly as bad as other reviews are making it out to be. I thoroughly enjoyed the film, and while it's not a movie I'd probably rewatch until Halloween 2021, it's a fantastic gem that's only an hour and twenty minutes. I'm not sure what it is some other viewers are looking for in movies like this, but what you see in the trailer is what you get, and like I said, if you're into cheesy and gory indie horror, Fear Pharm will be a welcomed treat to kick off your Halloween season. Further proof that sometimes you just need to watch the movie for yourself instead of listening to the mainstream, or you'll miss out on some fun horror! My verdict? Check it out!!!