Review – The Blackening

Review – The Blackening

The Blackening (2023)
R  ‧ Horror/Comedy ‧ 1 Hours 36 Minutes
Written by Tracy Oliver and Dewayne Perkins, based on the 2018 short film of the same name by the comedy troupe 3Peat.
Directed by Tim Story


  • Grace Byers as Allison
  • Jermaine Fowler as Clifton
  • Melvin Gregg as King
  • X Mayo as Shanika
  • Dewayne Perkins as Dewayne
  • Antoinette Robertson as Lisa
  • Sinqua Walls as Nnamdi
  • Jay Pharoah as Shawn
  • Yvonne Orji as Morgan
  • Diedrich Bader as Officer White
  • James Preston Rogers as Camden Conner


(In their own words).

Seven friends go away for the weekend, only to find themselves trapped in a cabin with a killer who has a vendetta. They must pit their street smarts and knowledge of horror movies against the murderer to stay alive.


The things I LOVED about the film:

  1. The Comedy – It’s a really funny movie. Probably more comedy than horror. 
  2. It’s Not Gross – It’s not a horror movie that is overly gross. There’s some tough scenes to watch, for sure, but it’s not very gory, which is my preference. 
  3. Really Captured Black Culture – It definitely was written by POC, because it felt like a ‘Black Horror” film. The characters are speaking authentically from the culture and not like stereotypes that white writers have written in so many past movies.  
  4. The Story – A funny thing happens when you have stories written by people from a different life perspective…you get new jokes. You get new ways of telling a story. This makes the telling of a simple “cabin in the woods” type of horror film suddenly seem very fresh and fun. 


The WORST things about the Film

  1. Couple of the actors really didn’t do it for me. I didn’t think they were very believable as people
  2. There are some really predictable moments of the film that take away from the enjoyment. 


This was an unexpectedly great time in the theater. I honestly wasn’t sure if this was going to be my kind of film. I was told it was closer to a Scary Movie type of horror/comedy than Bodies Bodies Bodies, but I disagree. I think it’s closer to the vein of Scream. It’s self-aware without being parody. It laughs at itself but also keeps an element of seriousness to keep the audience engaged and invested in the characters. It’s thought provoking in its examination of what it is to be Black and how to navigate relationships as you get older. 


Be wary of judging someone’s level of Blackness. 




Finally, a horror/comedy film that allows Black voices to exist authentically. When you have underrepresented voices write and direct a movie with a somewhat familiar plot; suddenly, the jokes are different, the tone is different, and the story is somehow different. This is a very entertaining, scary, and very, very funny film with some solid performances. It’s an intelligent and multi-layered movie; there’s much more to this film than I think it will get credit for. Its only downside is a couple of actors don’t quite fit into the skin of their character, and it suffers from too much predictability. But overall, it is well worth it to discover some new voices in horror/comedy and laugh a lot. 

My 3L system gives me the choice to Love It, Like It, or Lose It. 

The Blackening gets a Like It. 



This post was written by
When he’s not reviewing films or interviewing people for the Black & A Half podcast, Silas Lindenstein can be found in the greater metro Seattle, WA working as a real estate agent helping people buy and sell homes, or performing stand up comedy to fellow nerds. He has a wife and three children and desperately wants to learn to make the perfect homemade pizza.

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