Run Sweetheart Run (2020) | Explanation, Discussion & Spoilers | Film Review
Run Sweetheart Run (2020) is an American supernatural-horror film, written by Shana Feste, Keith Josef Adkins and Kellee Terrell and directed by Shana Feste. The film stars Ella Balinska, Pilou Asbaek, Clark Gregg, Shohreh Aghdashloo and Dayo Akeniyi. Run Sweetheart Run (2020) was distributed by Amazon Studios and released on Amazon Prime Video on October 28, 2022.
In the beginning of the film, It's night in what looks like a city and we see a missing person flyer on a telephone pole with a woman on it. The flyer has some bright red writing over the picture and description of the woman, which says, "Do you care?". Right below that it says, "Call the First Lady". I don't know who the First Lady is, beyond being the spouse of the president in the United States, so I really don't think she wrote that shit on there, unless that's her weird hobby or something no one knows about.
We next see a woman (Shana Feste) talking to a man in an office building, which seems to be located downtown in some city. The man asks her if she heard "Larry" correctly and she states that yes, she heard what he said (she doesn't appear to be hearing impaired, so I'm guessing he's trying to gaslight her) and she said something back, but he seems to have just ignored her reply. Basically, what I get from the conversation is the woman is trying to tell her boss or whoever the guy is (maybe human resources, I don't know) that "Larry" said something offensive and the guy is acting like that's pretty normal behavior for the "partners" at the firm.
He goes on further to tell the woman that even though the partners use offensive language, they definitely care about being inclusive, so she should look past whatever they called her. I mean...what? No, dude, if someone calls me something offensive, I'm going to say something to them and make sure they hear me. I doubt they'd ignore being called a "waffling cunt" or a "grilled dick-cheese sandwich". If they got offended, I'd just be like, "Oh haha it's a joke, you call me a bitch and I call you a 'dried up dog turd on wheels'. So funny, right?" How much you want to bet they wouldn't like it? I can already see this is an awful place to work, so I feel bad for the woman.
They continue to talk and the man tells the woman that no firm is perfect, but they really are trying to hire more women to work at the firm (I somehow doubt that). He tells her that some guy named James wrote her an impressive letter of recommendation for UCLA and she should be grateful to get a recommendation from James, who apparently is awesome and his words are gold to UCLA.
He's basically telling her to look past the firm's bullshit and just be grateful to James, who may or may not be a rude ass like Larry (probably, based on what this guy said about the culture of the firm), because James wrote her a letter of recommendation.
We next see some other women in the office who seem to be there only to be pretty decorations for the partners. They answer phones for the men, wear form-fitting, brightly-colored dresses, loosely curled hair, red lipstick and are both white. I'm getting some 1950's vibes here, to be honest, which isn't very progressive for women in general.
The woman we just saw in the office had her hair in a bun, wore a dark grey suit and no makeup that I could see, and was black; quite different from the other women at the office who seem to have the same job as her, so she probably stands out.
The woman gives me the impression that she doesn't play the games to try to be subservient to men, so the partners at the firm are giving her a hard time to try to put her in her place.
It becomes apparent that the woman is James' secretary or something like that and he's leaving for the day. She tells him "Happy Anniversary" as he is leaving and he tells her, "Thank you, Sweetheart." I mean...da fuq? I can see that James is a dick and thinks woman are beneath him simply by him refusing to use her name.
She leaves the office and James, who I will be referring to as James the Dick from now on, calls the woman, who is boarding a public bus. She stands in the middle of the aisle, holding on for dear life to the straps because the bus driver is a nut who drives like 50 mph over the speed limit (just kidding).
The woman, who we learn is named Cherie, and tells her that he "had to" fire Larry because what he said to Cherie was unacceptable. Then, as she is about to respond to that statement, he interrupts her to say he can't believe she double-booked him for a client dinner on his anniversary. She tells him she's sorry, acting like there's no way in hell she would have done something like that, but apologizes anyway.
I get the impression that James the Dick was acting like he was doing a favor to Cherie by firing Larry so she'd feel like she owed James the Dick a favor or something. I feel like a good boss would ask Cherie what happened with Larry, show some empathy and talk about what would be done about it and what policies are in place so she feels heard and protected if something like that occurred again with someone else. James the Dick seemed like he didn't care about how Cherie felt about what happened and was acting like it was basically her fault he "had to" fire Larry.
As she is talking, she can't see, but behind her is a creep looking her up and down. He decides to walk over behind her and TRIES TO FEEL HER UP. Another woman sees this happening, but doesn't say anything to help. Cherie lets this happen for like two more seconds, freaks out and moves to the front of the bus. What. The. Fuck.
Cherie goes to get off of the bus and gives the stringy-haired sexually abusive fuck the finger (yay, Cherie!) and gets off the bus, all while getting shit from James the Dick about the client dinner she supposedly forgot about. He asks her if she can go to the client dinner instead of him (WHAT? I'd be like, I'm not a damn lawyer, James the Dick, so no, I won't be going to some bullshit dinner YOU forgot about) and if she's able to get a babysitter in time. She tells him yes (shiiiiiit), that she will have childcare and can go to the dinner.
I mean...look at the facts: she has to work at a sexist law firm, gets sexually harassed/assaulted on a public bus because apparently she doesn't have her own car and she has a kid to look after? Wow. That's a lot.
Cherie gets home and takes a shower, noticing that her period starts while she's standing there, washing her hair. Gross. Drip, drip, drip, sploosh, bloop, sploosh...it's like a scene from Carrie (1976), without the traumatic girl's room scene (at least on her end...I'm over here like, I'm trying to eat dinner, thanks). She gets out of the shower and looks for a tampon, but she doesn't have any left.
Oh wait, her child has one in her tiny little fist and look, she's going to give it to Cherie...wait, no, she's pulling a power move and dropped the last tampon in the toilet as she stared her mother in the eyes. Bold choice, kid. Doesn't even wait until she can talk to start showing her mom who's boss. I guess she decided to start early and I can respect that.
Cherie puts her daughter to bed and reads her a bedtime story, obviously enjoying spending time with her even though she has a stressful and busy life. The baby is pretty young, so it seems like she must have recently broken up with the father or maybe the father isn't in the picture at all, don't know yet.
Wait. So, she's bleeding freely in the shower, right? There's enough period blood to go drip, drip, drop, sploosh, splash, sploosh in the shower and she's apparently not wearing a tampon, so...she's just free ballin', so to speak? Um, I don't know about you, but I like my nice clothes and don't want them ruined, so I don't go free ballin' on my period, just sayin'. Hopefully she stuffed some paper towels in there or a folded up bar towel. That'd be a sight to see hahaha.
We next see that Cherie's friend arrives to watch the baby, who we learn is named Luze. Luze is apparently the child of Cherie and a guy named Trey. Cherie is no longer in a relationship with Trey because he sucks as a person or something like that. Cherie relates to her friend that she feels bad for messing up with her boss, but her friend points out that Cherie never messes up and Cherie admits that she knows she didn't, that the boss messed up, but she can't tell him that. Ooh, pick me!! I'll tell him. I volunteer as Tribute!
Her friend helps her pick out an outfit, vetoing Cherie's initial outfit choices because they are too covered up and serious for an outing with a guy she doesn't know at all. That could be a creep. That her boss tricked her into seeing. How about...just don't go? Or maybe...wear a trash bag suit. Sexy and functional: you'll sweat like a pig to repel the possible creep and it'll make a lot of noise, so if you want to block out his side of the conversation because he's a dumbass or something, you have the option. Perfect!
Spoiler alert: Cherie doesn't wear a trash bag suit. Instead, her friend picks out a really pretty red dress Cherie apparently hasn't worn since before she was pregnant with Luze. Cherie is hesitant to wear the dress, but her friend tells her she can wear a trenchcoat over the dress to remain professional and has the option to remove the coat if she likes the guy.
Um, sure, great, but I'd be more worried about you know, bleeding all over the place. Remember earlier in the shower, Cherie? Drip, drip, splash, sploosh, drip? How you're not wearing a tampon because a small hobbit you're related to pulled a power move and dropped your last tampon in the toilet? Remember? Is it just me that remembers that? I guess so. Cool. Her friend looks the guy in question up and we learn his name is Ethan Sacks (Pilou Asbaek). What kind of sacks? Sacks of potatoes? Sacks of tampons? Let's hope he's got sacks of tampons because Cherie needs 'em.
Before she leaves, her friend gives her some pepper spray, telling Cherie that the guy may be good-looking, but he's still a man, so Cherie should be careful. Cherie leaves, then we see that she gets out of a car at Ethan's house, so I guess she took an Uber there since she doesn't have a car.
The house is massive and has a gated driveway, so it's kind of weird to me that Ethan didn't pick her up himself or have a driver to pick her up, but whatever. Also, if Cherie has to take an Uber, why meet him at his house? Why wouldn't you meet at like, a restaurant or bar?
Another thing is...this guy is supposed to be a lawyer in Los Angeles? I mean, some lawyers make really good money, but this mansion says to me he's like, super, super, super-rich. He doesn't look that old, so it's not like he amassed a fortune over time. California's taxes are insane, so I just doubt he has that much money from being a lawyer. Something's up.
Cherie knocks and Ethan answers, looking, to Cherie's relief, just like his photo her friend looked up earlier. He invites her inside and she marvels at how spectacular his mansion looks inside. It looks very expensive and he tells Cherie he's had a lot of help decorating it. He offers her a drink and makes her a gin and tonic, minus the tonic. Cherie takes a drink and makes a face, like that shit is naaaassssttyyy.
Hey, maybe this guy is a vampire or something. It would explain why he has so much money (he's had lots of time to amass a fortune and/or kills people and steals their money). Ethan goes over to a bar table thing to make his own nasty drink and Cherie notices a drop of blood on the floor.
Crouching, she puts her finger in it (Ew. What.) and realizes it's coming from her. Gross, so, gross. She excuses herself to the bathroom, where she is horrified to see that she has bled into her underwear. I mean, duh. What did you think was going to happen? You can't just bleed freely in the shower, not use a tampon, pad, cup, or bar towel and expect that bad things won't happen. You know, like bleeding in public, on people's nice marble floors and shit.
Cherie grabs some toilet paper (I hope it's to put in her underwear as a makeshift pad!) and it's not shown what she does, but it seems like she wipes herself and wraps the bloody toilet paper in more toilet paper, but doesn't flush or throw it away in the trashcan conveniently placed next to the toilet. She just puts it in her purse. Um. What is going on?
Did Cherie have a pad in her underwear I couldn't see, took it out, wiped herself, put the bloody tp in her purse, then pulled her underwear back up (not using the toilet paper as a makeshift pad)? Or did she not have a pad to begin with, wiped herself, then wrapped the bloody tp in more tp and store it in her purse?
Drip, drop, drip, splish, sploosh, splash, all over the floors, all over your white couch, all over the taxi, all over CVS, everywhere. She's a damn mess. There must be a reason for this, because usually in movies we don't have to deal with some moron who can't figure out how not to bleed everywhere and how to be sanitary, so let's figure it out, shall we?
Cherie goes back to the foyer and Ethan asks her if she wants to see his telescope or something. Wow, that's kind of forward, but let's go, Cherie! We're about to see his telescope! Ethan, in fact, does have a telescope (Not that kind of telescope, come on, people! Get your minds out of the gutter!) and tries to show Cherie Venus, but Cherie points out that Ethan is a dumbass and he's actually focused on Jupiter. He seems to like that she corrects him and teaches him something, which is a little cute but weird. She seems surprised, like people don't like being corrected and often tell her so (I can't imagine why).
They go to dinner at a nice restaurant and Ethan tells her in the most creepy way imaginable (that Cherie doesn't think is creepy for some reason) that he looked through her posts to see where to take her to dinner. "Okay...byeeee Ethan, it wasn't nice meeting you, hope to see you never, bye, byeeeeee." That's what I would say any way. This was supposed to be an impromptu meeting, but Ethan looked her up and went through her social media posts in an effort to (stalk her) find out what she'd like for dinner? That's so creepy.
Cherie giggles like what Ethan just said is cute and he tells her he decided on sushi because he knew she didn't like cheeseburgers or hamburgers for a dinner date. He asks about Cherie's life and she tells him she goes to UCLA at night. She tells him some of her family are nurses, but she decided to go her own way. Ethan tells her excitedly that one of his favorite people ever was a nurse. Was. Cherie doesn't ask him what the hell that comment meant, so we are left wondering what he meant by that.
While they chat it up, a dog comes out of nowhere and tries to give Ethan three less fingers than he started the night out with. Ethan reacts badly and we are left wondering what the fuck that was about.
Also, why is a random dog in a restaurant? And why did it try to tear Ethan a new asshole? Probably because it knows Ethan is an asshole. Dogs know their shit. Sometimes they eat shit, but that's neither here nor there; in this case, this dog knows Ethan sucks, so we have to wary of him, guys. Ethan apologizes after he realizes he scared Cherie and tries to get back to the date. He tells Cherie he was bitten by a dog as a child and received 48 stitches for his service. I somehow doubt this story is true.
We next see the two at a roller rink. What. Do those exist anymore? This guy is trying way too hard. They appear to be terrible at skating and at dancing and we are treated to the awful sight of them attempting to entertain each other (and mortifying the audience) while skating. It's obvious they like each other and want the night to continue.
They go back to Ethan's house, with Ethan giving Cherie a ride this time. (Why didn't he take her home, again? I guess he thinks he's going to get some play. Not with the blood extravaganza, he's not.) He invites her inside and she balks, saying she needs to get back because of baby Luze.
Ethan tells Cherie she can come in for one drink (yeah, right) and he'll set an alarm for 6:30 a.m. so Cherie can get back before Luze wakes up. Cherie notices he already has an alarm set for 5:25 a.m. and points it out to Ethan, to which he tells her is "100% a mistake". Come on dude, a mistake? Probably tells him when sunrise is so he doesn't fry up like a crispy critter, being "allegedly" a vampire and all.
Unfortunately, Cherie falls for Ethan's charm and agrees to stay until morning. She walks up the steps to the front door and we hear Ethan say, "That's a girl, sweetheart." She turns and says, "What?" and he tells her he said, "I like that." 'The fuck you did. So, now we have two douchebags who have called her "sweetheart" (who also know each other and may have set Cherie up to die or something) and Ethan is a total creep, who is about to get Cherie alone in his house. My uh-oh detector is going off (it's located around my butt area).
Cherie goes to the door first and heads inside and we see Ethan turn to the driveway and hold up his hand, like he is saying "hold up" to someone. Um?! Who is over there? Turn the camera around so I can see! Unfortunately, we can't see who he is gesturing to (Is it us? Has Ethan broken the fourth wall?) because the camera crew are inconsiderate dicks, so we have to watch and worry about Cherie as we see Ethan head into the house and are left outside like a stray cat. After a few seconds, we hear Cherie scream from inside the mansion and she rushes outside, breathing heavily and crying.
We see that she is bleeding from her shoulder area and she runs to the end of the driveway and scrambles up and over the gate barefoot (wow, that's impressive). We have no idea what happened, but it's safe to say Ethan attacked her (and maybe bit her, because you know, that's what vampires do).
The rest of the film follows Cherie as she tries to escape from Ethan and we discover who Ethan really is and what he wants from Cherie.
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*Discussion contains an explanation of the film and spoilers.
Cherie jumps over the driveway gate and falls down heavily, like an oaf and groans because, man, that shit hurts. As she is rolling around, trying to determine if her ribs are cracked, the driveway gate starts to open. Oh, now Ethan opens the gate? Dick! (I know, I know, he closed it to keep her trapped in there). Cherie figures out her ribs are okay and gets up and books it before Ethan comes and eats her or some shit. She's absolutely terrified and runs down the city street into the darkness.
She's limping along at a good clip, occasionally looking behind her to see if Ethan has caught up. She screams for help and comes to a house (looks like Ethan's neighbor) and bangs on the glass, but no one comes to the (glass) doors. Imagine that. In L.A. of all places (lol). Cherie runs from that house and tries to run in a new direction, but falls down again, crying and panicking.
She looks to her right and sees Ethan the Creep standing under a streetlight in the distance. Great. Reminds me of cat watching a dying mouse as it continues to fuck with it. She gets up and starts limping along at a slower clip than before (Can we get the girl some socks and shoes? And a tampon? Maybe some running gear and a crossbow? No, nothing?
Anyway, she comes to another gated driveway, sees a woman in that house, standing by a lamp. Unfortunately, either the woman knows who Ethan is and doesn't want to mess with his food situation or she's an asshole. Either way, she ignores Cherie's pleas for help and turns off the light. Thanks, bitch. Give her the finger, Cherie, I'm sure she's still standing there, in the darkness. Also, go around the corner and give Ethan the finger, too. I'm sure that asshole is coming down the block right now. That's what I'd do anyway.
Cherie runs down the street, screaming for help, but since everyone is a jerk, no one answers her. She runs down the block and comes across two women standing outside a theater. Cherie asks them if she can use their phone and they ask what happened to her. Cherie tells them she was attacked and asks to use their phone to call her babysitter.
Since she can't remember the number, she asks them to call the police instead. They do so, but the phone call is a little weird. It seems like they don't believe her story completely and the woman who calls the police seems to tell them that she might be on drugs and/or a prostitute.
The cops show up and we next see Cherie getting a ride to the pokey. We see in a flashback that when they showed up, they obviously didn't believe Cherie's story and think she's a drunk ass, making up stories (um, for what purpose, again?). They seem to think they should take her to jail so she can "sleep it off". Wtf. Maybe the cops are corrupt and in league with Ethan. Probably. It doesn't make sense they'd act like that, seeing as how she is injured and is obviously sober.
They take her mugshot and we see that she steps into the footprint outlines, which are now covered in blood from Cherie's apparently bloody feet. Gross. Also, wtf. She's bleeding freely and they are like, "Whatevs, your story is bullshit, bro." They charge her with public intoxication. Um. What. They take a mugshot for public intoxication? Since when? What is going on here?
They lead her into a cell and she asks for a tampon. The cop basically laughs and rolls his eyes and tells them he'll tell someone. Rude! Also, no he won't! He'll probably call Ethan or some shit. Great. And now Cherie is locked up and trapped in there.
As Cherie enters the jail cell, we see that there's another person in there. It's a woman, who looks like an actual prostitute, unlike Cherie. The woman tells Cherie she looks like she's been through hell and asks if she wants to talk about it, telling Cherie that "she doesn't bite." Hmm...well, someone else we know does. Probably. Allegedly.
Cherie seemingly decides to talk to the woman, telling her she went on a work thing that maybe was a date. Well, it turned into a date anyway. The woman tells Cherie that she hopes the guy "eats a big bowl of razors" and ends up face-down in a ditch. A woman after my own heart. One might say she's a prostitute with a heart of gold. Ha.
Cherie continues her story, telling the woman that Ethan made her a nasty gin and tonic and the woman immediately becomes tense. It seems that her friend had also met Ethan, disappeared and was found later, murdered. She gets up and screams at the guards, telling them Cherie is trying to kill her. In between several screams to be let out, the woman tells Cherie what happened to her friend.
It seems that her friend met up with Ethan and Ethan is not exactly human (surprise, surprise). Apparently, once you meet up with him, he stalks you until he kills you. She tells Cherie not to go home and that the police won't help because Ethan controls men. She also tells Cherie that she needs to contact the First Lady, so I guess the First Lady is somehow aware of Ethan and knows he is abducting and murdering women.
Apparently the 'tute is let out, because the next thing we see is Cherie sitting on a bench, drip drip dropping, splish splashing her blood everywhere, alone. She hears people talking in the distance and guess who arrives outside her cell? Ethan the Creep!
The cop who brought Cherie to the cell tells Ethan the woman in there has a red dress, so it seems like they knew she'd call the police and they picked her up to hold her for Ethan. Ethan walks in, calling Cherie a "sweetheart". She backs up, terrified, telling the cop that Ethan is the guy who attacked her, but they don't care.
Cherie keeps yelling at them to help her and Ethan screams for her to sit down and shut up. Um. Fuck you, buddy. I'd climb up on the cell walls and get higher, while giving him the finger. Unfortunately, Cherie sits down, terrified of Ethan and stares up at him, as in defeat. He basically tells Cherie that she surprised him. He thought she was a "disposable little cocktease", but she surprised him by fighting back.
He tells Cherie he'll let her live if he can hunt her that night and she survives until morning (yeah, right). It's like he's bored and wants a more interesting hunt than the women he's been hunting and murdering before, I guess. He tells he will give Cherie a head start, so Cherie has to agree, because what else is she going to do? The cop calls for Cherie, telling her she made bail and let her out, still without a tampon in sight. Or shoes. Or a crossbow. Also, bail for public intoxication? What.
As she walks down the jail hallway, we see on a bulletin board a number of flyers with missing women on it, with all of them most likely missing because of Ethan and his cop friends. She goes out the front of the building and sees a flyer of a missing woman on the ground, with "I matter" written on it and "Call First Lady" with a number after it. She doesn't seem to feel like she needs to call the First Lady yet, so I assume that will come later. Wouldn't it be some shit to see the First Lady flyers everywhere, all throughout the film and Cherie never calls her? Like, we never find out who the First Lady is? That would drive me nuts.
Cherie asks a cop sitting in a cop car where "Grand Street" is and he points the way. She keeps walking, wary of Ethan following her. She sees what looks like Ethan in the distance, following her. A hobo passes by her and she freaks out, spinning around to look at him. It's then that we see what Ethan did to her; she's got a nasty bite and it doesn't look like a human did it.
The bite is probably about 8-10 square inches and the bite marks look like a monster did it. Vampire marks are usually two small holes, so I'm not sure what the hell Ethan is. Although, in 30 Days of Night (2007), the vampires were more like sharks, so I guess he could be some weird type of vampire, I don't know. Her hair is sitting in it and it's probably super infected by now, so I'm sure that shit hurts like hell. Plus, still no shoes. No tampon. No crossbow. Cherie needs help!
Cherie sees a taxi coming down the street, waves it down and jumps in, telling the driver she doesn't have any money, but she can pay him later. I guess this guy is actually a nice person because he agrees to help Cherie. He looks worried, telling Cherie she shouldn't be out by herself, that he picked up other girls who looked just like her. She asks him what happened to those girls and he doesn't answer, looking even more distressed.
Well, maybe Ethan can control men, but it seems like he can't control all men, just ones that were already corrupt to begin with. Sounds more like the Devil to me, so maybe we are actually dealing with something more sinister than a regular mutant vampire?
The taxi driver drops her off, asking if the location she wanted to go to is her house and she tells him no, it's her boss's house. She goes up to James the Dick's massive apartment (he must be in on whatever is going on, otherwise how is he affording this place?) and he looks shocked at Cherie's appearance, acting all worried. He tells Cherie that Ethan attacking her is completely out of his character, but he believes Cherie. He calls for his wife, Judy and she appears, looking shocked at Cherie's appearance. James the Dick asks Judy to make Cherie some tea and says he should call the police.
Cherie tells them she already did, but that Ethan followed her there. He doesn't ask what she means by that, but tells her he's going to call Ethan. What. Cherie asks him not to call Ethan and tell him where she is. Cherie tells James the Dick that there's something very odd about Ethan, like Ethan is a monster. James the Dick's wife Judy is over by the stove, shaking like a leaf for some reason.
James the Dick makes excuses for Judy's behavior, saying she took Ambien earlier (okay, sure Jan). He lets Cherie get cleaned up and afterwards, Cherie sneaks into his office and looks through his computer, looking for evidence. She eventually finds a calendar that tells her that James the Dick offers women as a sacrifice to Ethan ONCE A MONTH. I told you he was a dick! I knew it! What a dick!
I just want to add, I don't think Cherie got a tampon, so she's about to bleed all over the nice nightgown she's wearing. Say goodbye to that thing, Judy.
As Cherie discovers James the Dick basically made a deal with the Devil for a fancy apartment, Judy pops in, scaring the shit out of Cherie. She hands Cherie a tampon (yay!), telling Cherie she probably needs one (she does!). Cherie tells her she must be going and Judy starts to allude to Cherie that she knows what is going on. She seems to be telling Cherie that she is sorry for what has happened to her.
She goes on to tell Cherie that Ethan can smell her, that Cherie's blood has a very powerful scent and that if she keeps herself clean, she may survive the night. James the Dick pops in the room, wondering why they are whispering and Judy tells him she was just giving Cherie her clothes. He seems to know a lot about Cherie, telling her that his house has always been a safe place for her and she should stay (not anymore).
Judy almost imperceptibly shakes her head and Cherie panics and runs out the door. She successfully navigates the stairs without falling down, but DOESN'T PUT THE TAMPON IN. This movie is titillating. Will Cherie ever be able to put in a tampon and take care of her wounds? No one knows.
James the Dick follows Cherie, but she's too fast for him. She stops a city bus, which is just pulling away and gets on before James the Dick can catch up. James the Dick looks disappointed as he watches the bus pull away and Cherie can see him calling Ethan, presumably telling him where Cherie is. The nice bus driver doesn't ask Cherie for money, she just asks her if she wants her to take her to the police station. Cherie says no, but asks if she can make a phone call. The bus driver hands her her phone (thanks, buddy!) and Cherie calls her ex-boyfriend Trey.
After riding the bus for a bit, Cherie decides to exit the bus and enters a convenience store, where she asks the clerk to show her where the tampons are (I guess she lost the one Judy gave her). She tells him she doesn't have any money and hands him her mom's gold watch, relating that he could pawn it for $50. The guy seems to take the deal and he hands her a wooden stick for the bathroom, telling her the bathroom is in the back of the building.
Um, does anyone else think he should've just given her the tampons on the house? I would have. I'd feel terrible about making someone who's obviously injured and on the rag pay for some tampons, just sayin'.
Cherie goes back outside to the back of the store, still wary of Ethan and while she's in the bathroom, trying to clean up the mess coming out of her, someone starts banging on the door, trying to get in. It's a tense scene, because I'm like, can Cherie get a damn tampon in? All I want is for her to put a tampon in. And get some shoes. Cherie finally manages to get a tampon in (yay!) and leaves the bathroom. Unfortunately, as she exits, she discovers Ethan is outside waiting for her. He immediately attacks Cherie and berates her for being so bad at hiding from him.
He drags her around by her hair and places her near some trash, telling her to "enjoy" whatever he's about to do. He looks at the camera and shakes his head seemingly at the audience, pushing the camera aside and now we know he is breaking the fourth wall. We hear him beating Cherie up and suddenly hear a gunshot.
The clerk at convenience store has appeared with a shotgun and has fired a warning shot at Ethan. Ethan turns and tells the clerk to beat it, so the clerk runs away. That's great. Fortunately, Cherie has found a brick and bonks Ethan on the head and runs away. She runs to the front of the building and sees the infamous Trey parked out front, waiting for her. She gets in and he drives off, not really seeming to get the trouble Cherie is in.
She tells Trey that she was in a fight and he questions her, saying he's never known her to get in a fight and asks if she wants to go home. She says she'd rather him just drive and get out of there, clearly panicked. Trey's kind of like, wtf are you drunk, girl? No, Trey, she's not drunk, just being chased by some vampire demon thing, you know, the usual Friday night shenanigans.
Trey becomes more concerned and starts to realize that Cherie is not telling him the truth, but can't get her to tell him what really happened. She asks him if he still has his gun and he says, yes, it's at his house, but some girl named Dawn is there too. Dawn, it turns out, was Cherie's best friend and is now Trey's girlfriend. Cherie hates Dawn because after Cherie dumped Trey, Dawn decided it'd be a great time to get down and dirty with Trey, thus ending their friendship.
Not having another option, Cherie agrees to go to Trey's house. As they drive, something hits Trey's car and he pulls over, ignoring Cherie's pleas for Trey to stay in the car. He returns to the car, unmutilated (thankfully) and tells Cherie he's not getting back in until she tells him what really happened. She finally tells him about Ethan.
Side note: There's a lovely billboard we have to stare at in the background the entire time Trey is titillating us while he's outside of the car. Seems inappropriate for a billboard, but what do I know, you know? It's some half-naked woman advertising for, well, I don't know, probably some kind of alcohol would be my guess. I think it's this movie's way of pointing to all the endless misogyny Cherie and other women face. Probably.
Cherie tells Trey that James the Dick set up the meeting with Ethan and that it turned into a date (and Ethan turned into a creep). She doesn't tell Trey about Ethan's freaky side exactly, so Trey just thinks he's a regular creep, unfortunately. Trey starts to tell Cherie about how he always thought James the Dick was shady, had no intention of helping her and probably just wanted to sleep with her (all true!), so basically Cherie was dumb to trust James the Dick at all.
They get to Trey's house and Trey goes inside to tell Dawn what's up. Dawn comes outside, ready to confront Cherie. She's angry about Cherie being there until she gets a good look at her and invites Cherie inside to get cleaned up, surprising Trey.
Cherie goes inside and sees that a bunch of Trey and Dawn's friends are in the living room, watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). These people are all pretty funny and they like horror movies too, so basically my kind of people. I'm also worried they are about to be cannon fodder though, since we haven't had an Ethan sighting lately and he was hot on Cherie's trail.
Before Cherie can go get cleaned up, Trey tells her he called the babysitter and the babysitter told him she had to leave, but called a friend she trusts to come and watch Luze. Um, what? Since when is that okay? Sure, invite a stranger to come and watch Cherie's kid, without her permission. Okay. Cherie takes this in and accepts it for some reason.
Cherie gets cleaned up and puts on some actual clothes (with shoes and socks!) and a new tampon! (Yay!). Still no crossbow though, unfortunately. One of the friends from downstairs comes upstairs to give Cherie some clothes and she asks him if he still does Tarot card readings. He tells her he hasn't since his grandma died, but he'll do a reading for her. She's asks if she's going to die (tonight) and he lays out the cards and tells her that her future shows the Death card. Technically, all that means is an ending and a beginning, not specifically death, but the guy recommends Cherie visit a church anyway, just to be safe.
Ethan picks that time to ring the doorbell and ask for Cherie, prompting Dawn and her friends to grab an assortment of weapons (a sword! a baseball bat! a chef's knife! two guns! yay!) and invite him in. We don't get a chance to see if he's an actual vampire because they invite him in, thinking they will easily beat his ass (or maybe kill him). He easily defeats them, unfortunately.
Ethan essentially forces Cherie to dance with him, surrounded by the corpses of her friends. (Her tarot-reading friend is safe in the other room, at least.) As they are dancing, Trey returns from wherever he went to (maybe he went for some coffee, hope you brought me some Trey!) and Ethan pauses his psychotic reign of terror on Cherie.
As Trey walks up to the house, he sees Ethan leading Cherie out and Cherie begs Trey not to say anything. Trey asks Cherie if that's the guy who hurt her and Ethan decides it's a good day to start decapitating people with his teeth and hands, which he does. On Trey. Ugh. Ethan sucks.
I liked Trey and Dawn and all their friends. They were good people. At least the Tarot reading guy is alive, right? I hope he doesn't get murdered by Ethan off screen. As the head-ripping is occurring, Cherie screams and runs off, which apparently makes Ethan happy. She runs through the house and out back, obviously in a much better position than earlier in the night, since she's wearing running clothes and shoes (and a tampon!).
Ethan walks casually after Cherie, like a dapper Michael Myers. She runs up some spiral ramp thing onto a foot bridge across a highway and sees Ethan waiting for her on the other side. He waves to her and then he gets hit by a car (ha! yes!). As he lays there like a lump, Cherie remembers Judy telling her that Ethan can smell her blood, so Cherie takes her tampon out and throws it on a truck on the highway, which is just passing by. Gross.
She hides and Ethan follows the scent of the discarded tampon, allowing Cherie to get away from Ethan again. And...she's without a tampon. Again. I mean, I'm guessing she didn't bring extra tampons, because you know, why would you when you could titillate us with..."Will Cherie ever be able to wear a tampon for more than 15 minutes at a time????" No? Okay.
Cherie sees a church in the distance and decides to visit it. Once she's inside, she asks the priest, who is named Father Raul, for Holy Water and some crosses. Me, I'd ask for a Desert Eagle and maybe an RPG. They have those at churches, right? Probably. Father Raul kind of acts like Cherie is just troubled by something evil or has mental health problems, and Cherie argues with him until she figures out Ethan has possessed him. Welp, I guess he's not a vampire since he can go into churches and shit. Not a lower demon, either. Are we dealing with the Devil or what? Who is Ethan, really?
Cherie looks around and sees a pair of feet sticking out of the line of pews, walks over to them and sees the real Father Raul on the ground, surrounded by a pool of blood. She looks back and sees Ethan standing behind her,, turns back and sees him in front of her. Nice, he can teleport, that's great.
She throws Holy Water at him and he gasps and screams, but he is only pretending to be hurt. Cherie asks Ethan what he is and he demonstrates off camera, turning into something horrific that growls, glows and emits strong wind. So...a My Little Pony? A Unicorn? Mmm...probably not. He's probably the Devil or something pretty close, I'd imagine.
Cherie screams and cries, cowering under Ethan's growls, but fortunately for her, Father Raul comes to (I mean, really? That was a LOT of blood!) and stabs Ethan in the back. He hands Cherie a lighter and tells her to go behind a panel he points at while Ethan drags him away, presumably to re-murder him.
Cherie tears away the panel and crawls through a tunnel with the lighter, which flickers. She ends up in a big room with a dirt floor (wtf?) and hears music in the distance. I have so many questions. How does Father Raul know about the secret tunnel? How did he know where it leads? How did Father Raul reanimate as a corpse? Why does this movie have so many details and why is it taking me so long to write this review?
Cherie finds some stairs and heads up, finding herself in some sort of a rave. She goes to the disgusting bathroom to clean up. Rifling through some cleaning supplies no one has used in like, at least five years, she finds some bleach wipes AND PROCEEDS TO WIPE HER WOUNDS AND CROTCH WITH THEM. Whaaaaaatttt the fuuuucccckkkk????! Ahhhh that hurts my crotch, Cherie! I mean, Windex would've worked better or you know, soap and water, ya nasty.
As she's "cleaning her wounds", Cherie sees two people come into the bathroom, making out. They head into a stall, still making out (what! gross! wtf!) and Cherie sees the girl toss her super-cool jacket over the stall door. Cherie, deciding the jacket now belongs to her, takes it. After Cherie takes the jacket and makes some kind of dress out of it, she stalks down the highway, now a badass bitch since she wiped her crotch and wounds with bleach. She spots another flyer that shows a missing woman and has the First Lady's information on it. This time, she rips the phone numbers off the bottom of the page, intent on finding out what the First Lady knows.
We then see a couple of girls put their purses on a hat stand (There's a hat stand in a rave? What.) and we see Cherie is standing against a wall like a creep. She goes over to the hat stand and takes a girl's bag, tossing it aside as she finds what she's looking for...a phone. Um, excuse me Cherie, you can be a badass, but part of being a badass is not becoming an asshole as well, you can put her bag back on the hat stand at least, rude ass.
She sits down on the couch and the dumbass who left her bag unattended has also kept her phone unlocked, so Cherie calls the First Lady. The First Lady tells her they need to meet and hangs up on her, so Cherie gets up to leave (um...okay, what?). As Cherie tries to leave, a group of creeps block her way, immediately showing her their rapey side at da club. Fortunately, a group of four girls rescues Cherie and she follows them out as they ask her where she needs to go.
She tells them she needs to go to "Century Spa on Grand", which is I guess where the First Lady resides. You know, not at The White House, like the other First Lady. Why is the First Lady running a spa? Huh? I wonder if Cherie can hit these girls and/or the First Lady for a tampon. Or several. Girl needs to start a tampon collection.
The girls tell Cherie they were out at da club celebrating because one of them got into Stanford University's M.A. program for marine biology or something. They don't really question Cherie's wanting to go to a spa at 3 a.m. and offer to take her surfing with them when the sun rises, which is at 5:25 a.m.. This causes Cherie to realize Ethan is wary of the sun, one weakness she keeps in mind for later.
Pretty much everyone Cherie meets is really nice and helpful and it sucks, because they are probably going to be cannon fodder for the most part. Damn it. Ethan finds Cherie because she refuses to collect tampons and actually wear them (and is also bleeding all over the place, naturally, since she didn't actually close any of her wounds). It didn't look like anyone was wearing a seatbelt and also, a demon hit the car doing 90 mph, so no one except Cherie is alive.
Ethan leans into the car, which is now upside-down and taunts Cherie, telling her she did well, but he's going to take Luze and raise Luze as his own daughter, causing Cherie to spit on his suit. Ethan, deciding he's not going to let anyone, much less a woman, spit blood on his dapper suit, drags Cherie out of the car. Fortunately, a super-cute dog shows up, threatening to remove part of Ethan's dapper suit, along with some choice organs.
Ethan decides he doesn't want to do the organ/suit removing dance with a pittie, argues with it, telling to go away. The pittie, obviously a shit-talker, tells Ethan off, probably saying some shit about how his suit is from Men's Warehouse on clearance (obviously) and he's way short for a man and has a tiny dick. Probably. I mean, that's the kind of shit shit-talking dogs say, I'm sure of it. The dog lunges at Ethan, aiming to get at his small intestines first, but Ethan disappears. Poof. Magic.
Cherie and the dog look around and are relieved to see Ethan is nowhere in sight. The dog casually walks over to Cherie and licks her face, like a cutie would. They start walking away from the crash after Cherie sees that Ethan killed all her new friends. Cherie's newest friend, who I'll call Super Cutie, leads her to the spa and stands guard outside as Cherie heads in to meet the First Lady. I mean, why didn't the First Lady send an Uber? I'm glad she sent Super Cutie to help, but still.
Cherie goes further into the spa and we see women getting spa treatments out in the open, sleeping, and also...training with weapons in the background. So...exactly like all the other spas I've ever been to. Cherie finally meets the First Lady and she tells her that "this place is your only hope." She tells Cherie that the air in the spa is purified by charcoal (probably stinks pretty bad in there, then), the red lights all over the facility kill any bacteria in the air and that they will use Cherie's bloody water to toss in the drains to trick Ethan because he won't be able to pinpoint where Cherie is.
The First Lady tells Cherie that she was sent to stop Ethan. She relates that Ethan had one job, to protect humanity, but Ethan, being a dickhead evil demon, basically only wanted men to succeed for some reason. She tells Cherie that for thousands of years, men had power, but the tides are turning and Ethan is getting more desperate and ruthless. I guess the women's movement really pissed Ethan off, huh?
The First Lady claims she is the first angel to exist and doesn't really say what Ethan is, but I assume he's the Devil by the context of the conversation. She tells Cherie that Cherie is the only one who has made it so close to daybreak and that she is special, so they have a real chance at taking Ethan down once and for all.
Cherie decides to get the fuck out, but the First Lady reminds her that he will not only kill her, he will also kill Luze. This stops Cherie and she realizes she has no choice but to fight Ethan. To the death! In the Thunderdome! Two men enter, one man leaves! Ha, not really, but that would be awesome if they had to bungee fight with chainsaws in the Thunderdome. I vote Super Cutie also gets a bungee and a chainsaw. She'd fuck Ethan up, I'm sure of it.
The women in the spa bathe Cherie and treat her wounds, then suit her up in a super cool martial arts outfit. She drives away in a cool red convertible, off to Yacht Harbor. Super Cutie goes too, sitting hilariously in the passenger seat like she thinks she a person. Cherie arrives at some carousel and starts tearing off her bandages like a savage, reopening her wounds. Let's not forget the tampon, either. Oh no, wouldn't want to leave a tampon in, no sir. Not in this movie.
Cherie holds the tampon up and squeezes the blood out of it and Holy shit, my lunch just came up, excuse me. Gross, so gross. Seriously, don't watch that part if you're grossed out by blood. Puke city, I tell you.
Ethan, of course, shows up shortly after Cherie squeezes out the disgusting mess in her pants and conveniently lights up the carousel. Ethan grabs Cherie by the feet and starts beating her up, but he's invisible so we can't see where he's attacking from. He taunts her, telling her it's impossible to beat him and the First Lady lied to her about him, saying that the First Lady is afraid of him and used Cherie.
He surprises Cherie and knocks her out and we see her wake up kind of in a parody of Jesus being crucified. Fucking Ethan, ugh. Not that I'm surprised since he's probably the Devil, but still, ugh. Cherie tells Ethan that she knows it's over, but she wants him to "have her". Ethan can't resist and lets her down on the ground, telling he knew Cherie would give up, etc., gross. Unfortunately for him, it's a trick and Cherie was just hoping to get closer to a rock she brought to throw at the walls to bring the daylight in.
Ethan laughs, easily dodging the shaft of sunlight Cherie created, but the women of the spa show up in similar martial arts outfits, throwing rocks and shit, creating even more shafts of light, to which Ethan cannot escape. He starts bleeding some black shit from his eyes and runs away.
We next see a trail of black blood and handprints on a pier and we follow it, where we find Ethan bleeding his black life's blood away. He must be super-pissed off; a bunch of women defeated him and he's bleeding all over his dapper suit. The First Lady shows up behind Cherie and Cherie tells Ethan someone is there to see him, stepping aside so he can see the First Lady.
The First Lady smiles and cheerily tosses a lighter on Ethan's trail o' black blood, which is apparently extremely flammable and lights his ass up. He turns into whatever his true form is off camera and apparently dies, becoming nothing but a lump of charcoal on a pier. Who's going to clean that up? Not me! Bye!!!
We next see Cherie walking along a beach with Super Cutie, with the First Lady again not giving her a ride anywhere or calling her an Uber (what a dick, really, Cherie just saved all women, everywhere!). Super Cutie walks Cherie home (aww!!) and sits out front, to guard Cherie (invite Super Cutie in, Cherie!). She goes in and sees the new babysitter sleeping on the couch and goes to greet Luze.
Luze is okay and seems to be cool with her mom's appearance, you know, covered in blood and assorted demon matter. She tries to poke Cherie's eye out, but misses and Cherie hugs her close, happy to be home.
I loved this film. I thought it was really fun and thoughtful, as it was an interesting take on the Devil and how the Devil was becoming more desperate for power because men were losing their power to women. It was also apparent in the film how men were, over time, more respectful and protective of women and how Ethan lost power in that way too, as he could not control all men.
I liked that at first you didn't know what Ethan was and it was easy to assume he was a vampire, like Cherie did, but you kind of knew something else might be happening too. There were hints, but not too many, to keep it interesting. Also, there wasn't really a definitive answer as to what Ethan actually was, which I liked, so you could believe he was the Devil or some other fallen angel if you wanted.
I also liked how many of the characters were likeable and memorable, how many people helped Cherie and how the film kept pointing to Cherie's strength and resilience, even though she didn't think she was that strong. I think strength has to come from within and you have to believe you are strong in the first place before you can be strong. Like basically, if you think you can't do something, you are more likely to give up and not try at all, but if you say, I can do it, I believe in myself, you can do much more than you think you can, but you have to start somewhere.
I really think the progression of Cherie's character from meek and mildly assertive to strong and resilient was a believable one and I liked that no one took over for her to defeat Ethan. She did it almost all on her own. I kind of thought once she got to the First Lady, she'd take over, but she had to basically trap him so the ladies of the spa could finish him off. All the First Lady did was throw a lighter at his extremely flammable black life's blood.
Plus, I love movies where dogs are heroes too.
I hope you liked this review. Have you seen this film? Did you like it? Are you planning on seeing this film? What did you like about it if you saw it? What did you dislike? What do you think Ethan really was? Please share your thoughts below!