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"FANTASY ISLAND"
(2020) (Michael Peņa, Maggie Q) (PG-13)


Read Our Full Content Movie Review for Parents

QUICK TAKE:
Horror: Guests at a tropical resort find their fantasies twisted in horrific ways.
PLOT:

There exists an island somewhere in the tropics where guests pay money to have their fantasies brought to life by the owner of the resort, Mr. Roarke (MICHAEL PEŅA); his assistant, Julia (PARISA FITZ-HENLEY); and a small staff. Among the latest guests is Gwen Olsen (MAGGIE Q) who wants a fresh start in life due to two major regrets from her past. Cop Patrick Sullivan (AUSTIN STOWELL) always dreamed of being a military man like his late father, Lieutenant Sullivan (MIKE VOGEL), and thus would like to serve for a short while.

Having been bullied in school by Sloane Maddison (PORTIA DOUBLEDAY), Melanie Cole (LUCY HALE) would like to get revenge on her. And simply looking for party-based fun, step-brothers JD Weaver (RYAN HANSEN) and Brax Weaver (JIMMY O. YANG) are just looking for a good, randy time with others.

Observing them is a private investigator, Damon (MICHAEL ROOKER), who's been stuck on the island for a while after having initially tried to figure out how Roarke makes such fantasies come true. And it's not long before the newcomers learn that there's truth to their host informing them that fantasies usually don't work out as desired.

That includes Gwen suddenly finding herself as a wife and mother; Patrick running into his father; JD and Brax having their fun interrupted by gun-toting, masked intruders; and Melanie ending up having to save Sloane from a sadistic torturer, Dr. Torture (IAN ROBERTS), who wants to do her harm.

OUR TAKE: 3 out of 10

Our reviewing policy for films that aren't shown in advance to critics is that we'll only provide a paragraph or two about the film's artistic merits or, more accurately, lack thereof. After all, life is too short to spend any more effort than that on a movie that even the releasing studio knows isn't any good (which is why they hid it from reviewers before its release).

Based on the far-better TV show of the same name from many, many moons ago (and turning the premise of fulfilled fantasies into horror fodder), this offering has a bit of potential but pretty much squanders it. With next to no genuine scares, the only thing the film had me fantasizing about was going back in time to either fix the issues or simply pull the plug on the project. It rates as a 3 out of 10.




Reviewed February 14, 2020 / Posted February 14, 2020


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