The Dreadfully Funny Dark Comedy of ‘Sightseers’ (31 Days of The Best Horror Films You May Have Missed Pt 3/31)

Sommerleigh Pollonais, Horror Head Writer

This October I decided to watch and review some of those great horror movies (31 to be exact) that I missed on their initial release. And for Part 3 of my series of the 31 OF THE BEST HORROR MOVIES YOU MAY HAVE MISSED we will be hanging out with some Sightseers. With a mild SPOILER ALERT let’s get to it:

Sightseers (2012)

You know that guy wasn’t too bad. Pity I had to off him

Director: Ben Wheatley

Starring: Alice Lowe, Kenneth Hadley, Steve Oram

IMDb Trivia: Tony Way (Crich Tourist) is seen eating a Cornetto. This movie was executively produced by Edgar Wright, who directed Shaun of the Dead (2004), Hot Fuzz (2007) and The World’s End (2013) aka “The Cornetto trilogy”.

Plot: Chris wants to show girlfriend Tina his world, but events soon conspire against the couple and their dream caravan holiday takes a very wrong turn.

I know it’s called “Burning Man”, but I didn’t know they actually burned people. #themoreyouknow

Review: There are dark comedies and then there’s British dark comedies. If you’re a fan of any of Edgar Wright movies, or you’ve seen Ben Wheatley’s Kill List (an excellent horror/thriller that made my 31 Days list last year) you’ll know no one can twist a horror comedy quite like the Brits. 

From the moment Tina (Alice Lowe) sets out on vacation with her new beau Chris (Steve Oram) the dark humour begins to flow and we quickly learn Chris takes a page from the book of Hannibal Lecter (minus eating livers with a nice Chianti) when it comes to dealing with people he deems rude or entitled. Dread permeates the movie as one might begin to worry for poor Tina, a lonely woman who is so enamoured by the fact she has a boyfriend and is enjoying her lovely vacation across the country that she’s blind to his darker personality traits. But as the story continues to unfold we quickly begin to realise Tina might be the bigger threat in this messed-up relationship. 

You can kill the people but nobody touches a hair on that dog’s head. You hear me?! Not a hair!

Wheatley’s use of pop music and the vast beautiful English countryside as a backdrop to the gruesome acts pulled by this couple make for the kind of moments that make you both bark with laughter and cringe in shock all at the same time. Lowe and Oram are stand-up comedians and Sightseers actually started out as a series of sketches they would perform. When one of their shorts caught the eye of Edgar Wright, he decided to make it into a full feature-length film. If you’re a fan of Wright’s films you’ll quickly see how this darkly humorous take on toxic co-dependent relationships would appeal to him. 

These are two people who are both trying to be more than they are. They want to be seen, acknowledged by the world the way the various historical attractions they visit are acknowledged, and admired by everyone. But even with their body count stacking up, they come across more like children trying to get the attention of their parents by acting out. 

Nothing like a little murder and mayhem to get the old romantic juices flowing, amirite? Why are you looking at me like that?

The conclusion is a predictable one and yet it’s brilliantly executed and quite fitting when you examine what came before. Funny, dreadful and a tad nihilistic, if you’re a fan of Wheatley and Wright’s other films, you’ll find a lot to enjoy with Sightseers.

Sommer’s Score: 7.5 out of 10

And you can check out Part 2 of my 31 Days list Detention below as well as my review of Kill List:


2755F829-2EEC-4A68-B6F7-F963F48C9D92 Sommerleigh of the House Pollonais. First of Her Name. Sushi Lover, Queen of Horror Movies, Comic Books and Binge Watching Netflix. Mother of two beautiful black cats named Vader and Kylo. I think eating Popcorn at the movies should be mandatory, PS4 makes the best games ever, and I’ll be talking about movies until the zombie apocalypse comes.

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