You have to hand it to writer-director Chris Moore. He always knows how to spin an issue without negating its rightful purpose. His first feature Blessed Are the Children, was a horror film treatise that looked at the complexities of the abortion issue. His latest, Triggered, explores the complications of being politically woke or as the case is here, being way, way too woke.
Callie (Meredith Moller) is a high school student who is ready to take down anyone who discriminates. Unfortunately, the fact that her overenthusiastic calling out is often based on misguided perceptions is totally lost on her. Ian (Jesse Dalton), her gay best friend, puts up with her antics, grudgingly, and because his open homosexuality often puts a damper on other forms of schoolyard camaraderie. But as Callie’s increasingly out of control finger pointing and warped world view is coupled with the arrival of a serial killer, he soon finds that he may finally have to strike out on his own in order to survive.
With sharp humor, Moore looks at the ways in which political correctness may not always be founded in necessity here. Thus, while reveling in the comedic nature of this viewpoint and in the very bloody nature of the classic slasher prototype, Moore also allows us to examine our own beliefs and look deep within our justified outrage to find a necessary balance – a true artistic feat.
Nicely, staying true to indie terror expectedness, Moore gives original A Nightmare on Elm Street sweetheart Amanda Wyss a role here. But, he subverts expectations, once again, by using her for more than a momentary moment of fan-folk glee. As Gloria Fielding, one of Callie’s advisors, Wyss is a major participant in the plot proceedings and is given a wide range of emotions to tackle. From exasperation to grief to survivalist determination, Wyss delivers with a bold and thoughtful performance. She, along with Moller and Dalton, are deserving of any film festival awards that should, rightfully, come their way.
Importantly, Moore also dashes another common horror movie dynamic here. Instead of showering in a preponderance of female breasts and buttocks, all the nudity here is of the male variety. This adds a fresh, desperately needed spin on the exploitative measures of these films…and definitely gives the testosterone loving audience members something to look forward to.
Currently hitting the festival circuit, you too can point a biased finger at all of Triggered’s activities at https://www.facebook.com/FindURSafeSpace.
Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!