I took a trip to the Fear Pharm…

…and then went back for more! After numerous marathons of “smart horror” in my Shudder watchlist, I seriously needed to actually get back to enjoying horror again with simple fun, and this double feature did the job. I’m definitely going to be adding these two films to my personal collection.


Yay! A humorous indie throwback to early 2000s slashers that takes a basic premise (kids visit a haunted maze), gives us what we expect, and yet also throws in a few silly surprises to deliver pure fun. If I have one complaint it would be that despite the IMDb description describing Fear PHarm as a Halloween film, the holiday is never referenced in any way. Pumpkin and hay bale displays at the entrance to the corn maze are the most you get, so I’d say it’s a good fall season horror flick more than Halloween specific.

Things start off perfect, with a naked woman being chased by a bunch of masked killers and getting gruesomely hacked up.

15 years later, we jump right into some sexy times between two of our four attractive main kids.

Not only are they all likable, they decide quickly to head off to the haunted maze.

Next we meet the crazy family that owns and runs the place. Unlike the usual backwoods nuts, these are smart entrepreneurs.

While some of the family members always wear their haunter costumes (including a muscle hunk in a mask), the patriarch is a sexy daddy, and the “slutty” daughter is the “scientist” in the family.

After introductions are done, our four main kids learn they’ve earned a chance to win money if they get through one of several secret mazes. They decide they can quadruple their chances of winning…by splitting up!

As the sun starts to set, the cast is treated to some cheap scares before shit gets real. The bummer here is that there are only four kids and you really like them all and don’t get enough time with them, so you hate to see them die. But die they must.

Good chases, good gore, some tame but still nasty torture, plenty of understated humor,  a great assortment of psycho killers, an awesome final girl, and a campy, unique killer motivation make this one a blast, so naturally I had to check out the sequel.

FEAR PHARM 2 (2021)

Considering both films are less than 80 minutes long and this continues the story of the main girl from the first movie, it makes sense to just watch the first film and the sequel as one long movie.

As is often the case with sequels, this one gives us some backstory and more over-the-top plot points, offers a higher body count, brings different psycho members of the family to the forefront, amplifies the characteristics of each killer, and pumps up our main girl with even more fight.

There are some story elements involving the family’s business, but they’re not all that important.

The film is well aware of that and therefore doesn’t take long to just line up a whole new bunch of kids for the slaughter.

This time it’s a gaggle of girls running through the maze, and they ensure that there are plenty of chase scenes, fights scenes, death scenes, and gore.

Basically this sequel makes up for the shortcomings of the first film by giving us more of everything we couldn’t get enough of with only four main characters the first time around.

Fear Pharm 2 is fast-paced slasher action from start to finish, and the main girl rox once again.

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES. I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at www.facebook.com/BoysBearsandScares.
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