“Till death do us part” is the twisted omen that lingers throughout this film. In an eerie horrorscape built on the punishment of women, Till Death is a nuanced and enlightening take on feminist horror.
The directorial debut by Scott Dale tells the tale of Emma (Megan Fox) and her weekend away with her controlling and manipulative husband, Tom (Eoin Macken). In an attempt to rekindle their fading marriage riddled with lies and infidelity, Tom surprises Emma with a trip to a remote lake house for their anniversary. Whilst Emma is initially apprehensive, the two settle in for the night where she is awoken the following morning, handcuffed to Tom’s corpse.
As the quick-thinking Emma tries to escape, she finds that Tom has disabled both her car and phone, making any attempt to break free futile. Being stuck, barefoot in the freezing snow, without any way to separate herself from Tom, she discovers his final act of punishment as two hitmen approach the secluded cabin.
The film’s concept is similar to The Invisible Man (2020) but with a much more interesting backstory. Till Death challenges the fate of women who are victims of their husbands. With an outstanding performance by Fox, Till Death shines a new light on feminist horror. From her performance in the cult-classic horror Jennifer’s Body (2009), Fox is once again presenting herself as a staple within the canon, proving that whilst 12 years have passed, her acting has only gotten stronger. Not only is Fox the lone character for the majority of the film, she commands every frame she is in, proving that Fox has something to say about feminism, and in Till Death, she makes herself heard loud and clear.
Fox’s enticing and vulnerable performance, which consistently toes the line between being either in complete control to overwhelmed, carries the film as it explores Emma’s traumatic past under her husband’s possessive and hypocritical gaze. The film’s phenomenal pacing and superbly concise editing allow the narrative to unfold effortlessly into a nail-biting climax. The story becomes insidiously more intricate and complex as each step closer to safety reveals another trap that Emma must overcome. In such an open space, the film manages to create an increasingly tense and claustrophobic environment, which centres around Emma’s perseverance, persisting beyond what we typically see within the horror Final Girl trope.
Till Death’s feminist take on horror provides a landscape for patriarchal ideologies to be challenged. With its tight 88-minute running time, Till Death packs a punch. It is an exhilarating film that is not for the faint of heart. With a complex exploration of female trauma and perseverance, Till Death positions itself alongside other cult-favourites within the feminist horror canon through its political and incredibly well-executed take on horror.
The movie was filmed in Bulgaria. The snow is actually fake, made from paper. In fact, the whole set takes place inside of a studio.