There’s something fresh about Fresh. The directorial feature debut of Mimi Cave, Fresh plays on the tropes of a rom-com, before quickly delving into something else that I highly doubt anyone would expect from the outset.
Noa (Daisy Edgar-Jones) dates and dates, dealing with the worst kind of men prevalent in the modern dating scene. That is until she meets Steve (Sebastian Stan), a charming and handsome surgeon who quickly entraps her in his scheme. It’s only after the opening credits, that roll well past the film’s first act, that Fresh turns sour.
Fresh is best enjoyed without knowing the plot details too thoroughly, but safe to say Cave has taken some inspiration from thrillers and horrors such as Get Out, Misery and Split, with the added bite of satires like Promising Young Woman. It’s gory and outright violent at times, with the more squeamish encouraged to stay home.
But it also has great comic moments. Noa’s best friend Mollie (Jojo T. Gibbs) brings the power with an elevated performance that matches the two leads. In fact, the latter part of the film feels flat because of her lack of involvement in the story.
Cave is best known for her music video and indeed the visuals here are stunning, matched with strong music sequences and camera shots. But also this is what holds it back, preferring to avoid the more serious moments in lieu of gorgeous scenes to please the eye or gross out the viewer.
A more thoughtfully detailed storyline with moments of development could have served the film well, however, it is still a fun romp with a side of…well you’ll have to wait and see.