Hulu's Fresh Leaves Little to the Imagination
Over the past few years, Hulu has been releasing several horror films that have left viewers wanting more. This is no different from the latest film released titled Fresh (2022). Following the shocking theme of cannibalism, Fresh leaves very little to the imagination, but due to the taboo nature of the storyline, audiences are drawn to it. However, besides the direct interaction the audience has with cannibalism, there are other important themes presented by filmmakers that makes Fresh stand out from other horror films on Hulu and puts it on the top horror films released by Hulu. Filmmakers confidently mix comedy and out right gore for a beautiful film that is unique and refreshing to audiences.
The story follows a woman, Noa, who finds herself in the unfortunate predicament of modern dating. The film starts off by introducing her to the audience as someone who hates dating, everything about it. Until she meets Sebastian Stan’s character, Steve. They are immediately drawn to each other. Steve, out of the blue, strikes up conversation in the grocery, which Noa cannot resist. Noa finds him incredibly charming, attractive, and everything she wants in a man. Surprisingly to Noa, he is a gentleman, someone who listens to her, and soon into their relationship, someone who she could see the rest of her life with. She claims to her best friend, she didn’t know people met like that anymore and that’s what she liked about Steve.
Things between the two lovebirds soon get serious and Steve asks Noa if she’d like to go away for the weekend with him to Cottage Grove. However, it wouldn’t be a horror film if everything ended up happily ever after, now would it? Unfortunately for Noa, things turn out to be more than they first appeared, and Steve, well he turns out to be a sociopath.
The filmmakers do an amazing job at addressing this taboo issue by not including any jump scares throughout the film, or any tense music cues to inform the audience how to feel. Instead, the music is more subtle, and the horror, while graphic, does not give as much of a fright other than visual disgust. It seems as though the filmmakers were rather in tune with how audiences react to these taboo scenarios and were able to successfully portray it on screen in an entertaining and still frightening way. The addition of comedy throughout the film also gives the viewers relief from the disgusting events occurring on screen and an outlet for those not so keen on the cannibalism theme.
While cannibalism and taboos are the main topic of conversation throughout the film, there are other important themes presented to the viewers that appeal to various audiences, specifically women. One of the main themes in the film is toxic masculinity, to the point of murder, and femine perserverance or survival. Since the beginning of the horror genre, women have been the subject of the pain and suffering most of the time. It’s refreshing to see the women fight back against these oppressors and it really reflects how women can remain strong in a male dominated society. The actors do an amazing job at upholding these themes, without over acting.
The script itself is rather impressive, with multiple lines being memorable to the audience. The actors of course have a large impact on this, but the script really brings everything together, reminding viewers of an 80’s horror film, with cheesy lines and lots of gore. The film is not recommended for younger audiences or those who are uncomfortable with gore or the topic cannibalism, however, it is highly recommended for those who love horror, and are avid horror fans as it could soon be a classic film in the subgenre. Fresh is available for viewing on Hulu.
Fresh (2022) Official Hulu Trailer