Film Review: Party Hard, Die Young

If there was an element of horror cinema which is the equivalent of comfort food, then it would definitely be called ‘annoying attractive teenagers die horribly’. Whilst these slasher flicks are hardly the most progressive or innovative areas of genre film-making, they often provide the most pound for pound entertainment. The likes of Scream(s), I Know What You Did Last Summer, The Cabin in the Woods and Saw(s) have proved incredibly popular. Dominik Hartl’s new film Party Hard, Die Young is all about consequences.

Julia (Elisabeth Wabitsch) has studied hard, graduated and now it’s time to party. Along with her best friend Jessica (Antonia Moretti) and their classmates, they join thousands of young people on an island in Croatia for a week of sun, sex and rampant hedonism. However, when friends start disappearing and accidents befall the group it soon becomes clear that someone is targeting them.  

Hartl, who impressed with the irreverent and arch Attack of the Lederhosen Zombies, once again demonstrates that he has a knack for playing with genre tropes and clichés. Amid the booze-fuelled revelry is an astute cleverness which means that Party Hard, Die Young never feels like a mere copy or outstays its welcome. The cast are believable and the premise just about stays on the right side of the line. Party Hard, Die Young repeatedly defies expectations and keeps you guessing until the end.

Party Hard, Die Young comes to Shudder (US, UK & Canada) on 3 July.

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