One of my favorite movies I caught at Fantastic Fest this year, was Sweetheart — but don’t let the title fool you, this isn’t a rom-com or feel-good family tale, it’s a white-knuckle survival movie and one hell of a creature feature. Today, we’ve got an exclusive clip, teasing Sweetheart‘s island of terrors. The Blumhouse horror comes from Sleight director J.D. Dillard and stars Kiersey Clemons as a young woman who washes up on the shore of a desert island and discovers her Cast Away nightmare is just beginning when a monstrous creature stalks out of the ocean and starts leaving mangled corpses in its wake.
Sweetheart isn’t just an ass-kicking creature feature (though it absolutely is that, with an all-timer monster introduction), it’s a film that has something to say. Dillard laces his script (co-written with Alex Hyner and Alex Theurer) with cultural commentary that twists the knife on an even deeper level, making his movie about survival in a much bigger sense of the word. It’s also one of the most resourcefully directed films I’ve seen this year, making the most of a micro-budget with clever set-pieces, staging, and smart reliance on Clemons’ outstanding performance. And yes, I promise the title will make sense when you see the movie.
Sweetheart also stars Emory Cohen, Hanna Mangan Lawrence, and Benedict Samuel. Watch our clip debut below, read my full Fantastic Fest review here, and stay tuned for our in-depth chat with Dillard when the film arrives on Digital and On Demand on Tuesday, October 22.
Here’s the official synopsis for Sweetheart:
“Jenn finds herself completely alone on a small tropical island after her boat goes down. By day, every ounce of her strength, cunning, and courage is strained simply to find food, outlast the elements, and survive. But as the sun sets, Jenn’s waking nightmare inexorably grows into terror, when a malevolent force comes to stalk the jungle for prey. From Blumhouse, producers of GET OUT and THE PURGE franchise, comes a thrilling twist on the castaway genre”