The Dinner Party (2020)

Renowned surgeon and culinary enthusiast Carmine Braun (Bill Sage) invites a struggling playwright, Jeffrey Duncan, and his wife to his semi-annual dinner party with a promise to fund Duncan’s new production. No sooner do the Duncan’s enter the mansion’s foyer, the weirdness begins at the hands of the party’s eccentric, elitist guests. And the weird visions begin, such as Haley washing her hands in bathroom basin and seeing a swimming goldfish. As the weirdness turns to madness, Jeff and his wife come to realize the guests are practitioners of an ancient religion—and they’re the “centerpiece” of the ceremonial dinner.

Writer/director Miles Doleac is an actor who’s worked on a variety of shorts, indie films and web series (TV’s American Horror Story and Banshee the most familiar) who’s expanded into a behind-the-scenes roll—and has shown tremendous growth on this, his fifth feature film (his others are The Historian, The Hollow, Demons, Hallowed Ground).

While you’ll recognize the marquee name of Jeremy London (T.S Quint from Mallrats, TV’s Party of Five and 7th Heaven), the star here is familiar U.S. TV actor Bill Sage from the CSI, NCIS, and Law & Order franchises, along with his recurring roles on cable’s Boardwalk Empire, Nurse Jackie, Orange is the New Black, and Power.

Doleac’s an obviously a student of the Hammer-Amicus Institute of British Psychological Horror; he knows his way around the Southern Gothic corridors of his “secluded, creepy mansion” loaded with off-kilter characters. Think Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby and a giallo-bent version of Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut with touch of Paul Naschy’s The People Who Own the Dark (without the zombies), and you’ll enjoy your evening at this dinner party.

The Dinner Party will be available via DVD and Digital from Amazon, Google Play, Fandango Now, iTunes, Vudu, and Xbox, as well as Dish Network, Direct TV and local cable providers on June 5 through Uncork’d Entertainment.

Disclaimer: We were provided a screener by the film’s P.R firm. That has no bearing on our review.

About the Author: You can learn more about the writings of R.D Francis on Facebook. He also writes for B&S About Movies.

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