pilgrims at the door

This week’s episode is certainly our most pointed Thanksgiving horror film to-date. Only found on Hulu as part of Blumhouse’s “Into the Dark” full-length feature series, “Pilgrim” is a goofy yet disturbing tale of what happens to a family that is not so thankful for what it has – and somewhat-improbably based on a true story.

Happy Thanksgiving, dear listeners! We are thankful for each and every one of you.

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Pilgrim (2020)

Episode 236, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Hello everyone. And welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd.

Craig: And I’m Craig.

Todd: Well, last month was Halloween month. This month, we have another big holiday in the U S Thanksgiving. And usually we, I have a hard time finding Thanksgiving horror movies. So this time around Craig was able to dig up a film. That’s actually a full length movie, part of an anthology series that’s playing right now on Hulu.

The name of the series is called Into the Dark. I believe it’s on its second season. And this is episode two, called Pilgrim. Very pointedly Thanksgiving, maybe the most Thanksgiving of the Thanksgiving horror movies we’ve been able to dig up over these years. Right?

Craig: I think so.

Todd: I think until we see like Eli Ross, thanks, killing or whatever like that, uh, here we are with a Pilgrim and you can only find this on Hulu right now.

And again, it’s part of this anthology series. So 12 episodes in each of these seasons and. That’s supposed to be from what I read online course, this is the only one I’ve seen. It’s supposed to be that each of these episodes, which are full length features are supposed to center around the holiday of a particular month.

But from what I’ve read online, some of them referenced the holidays a little better than others. This one, again, being quite on the nose. I, um, I really enjoyed watching this movie and it wasn’t until the end of the film that I was reminded of some texts that came up at the beginning of the film. Which said that it was based on a mostly true,

Craig: right?


Todd: Yeah,

Craig: that’s gotta be bullshit. Right. That’s

Todd: what I was thinking. I mean, of course it’s mostly bullshit, but at the end of the movie, there is a, uh, photograph that comes up. That’s a picture of, uh, Apparently a real life picture from one of the writers, the co-writers of the story who actually came up with a story and claims that something like this happened to his family.

And what happened was at Thanksgiving when he was a kid, his family had had brought in a reenactor Pilgrim. Uh, in his house for Thanksgiving and this guy apparently never broke character and it became very awkward and very weird and strange. Now I don’t think it ever got quite to the degree that a, this movie, seriously not, or else we’d be seeing this.

Famous crime stories instead of some worry about ology on Hulu, but, um, it’s intriguing. Nonetheless. I wish I could have found out more about it. I really couldn’t. So aside from that photo and a couple quick little interviews online, where else? Yeah, this sort of thing happened to my family. It’s. Sort of based on a true story.

So in any case, uh, interesting concept and that’s exactly what it is. This woman, um, is not happy with the way, or family’s not quite coming together. They need a little boost of Thanksgiving spirit. And so she decides that she’s going to invite this Pilgrim reenactment thing that she found online into her home.

And it all kind of spirals from there. So, Craig, I hadn’t heard of this until you recommended it to me. How did you find it?

Craig: I literally just Googled Thanksgiving, Halloween or Thanksgiving horror movies, which, which we’ve done for years at this point. And no, I had never heard of it either, but it was one of the first ones that popped up and I read the synopsis night.

I agreed with you. Like, we may actually have a legit Thanksgiving horror movie on our hands and we definitely do this movie. It was pleasant surprise for me, you know, I didn’t know what to expect. I didn’t have Hulu either. I didn’t. I signed up for a free trial just so that we could watch this.

Todd: Yay.

Thanks. Thanks for sharing your login with me, buddy.

Craig: You’re welcome.

Todd: Now you’ve got like what 14 days to go and watch all the other, um, episodes in this long series. I kind of feel like that might’ve been a bit of an impetus for you to go ahead and pull the trigger on it.

Craig: Yeah, it really was. It’s something that I’ve been thinking about for a while.

And, and, uh, when I was looking around on the platform, again, we don’t get paid by any of these platforms. So take this information as you will, but you know, when I signed up, they have, you kind of look around and. See the types of things you’re interested in, and then they give you recommendations and whatnot.

And there actually is a lot of content on Hulu and, and, uh, you know, a fair amount of horror content on there. And it’s only six bucks a month. And. At first, I was thinking like, Oh man, you know, I already subscribed to Netflix and shutter and like, do I really need it? Another street Disney? I don’t lie.

True. Well, my mom pays for that while

Todd: it’s true. Confessions time here on two guys and chainsaw my,

Craig: my parents. My parents pay for Disney. Plus I pay for Netflix. We share,

Todd: you know, what a true spirit of Thanksgiving.

Craig: Yeah. There’s some good content. And I was talking to my partner last night and I was like, you know, a month of Hulu costs less than a value meal at McDonald’s.

I think we can probably swing it.

Todd: You pay more for it, like a coffee at Starbucks, to be honest.

Craig: Exactly. But anyway, so. So we, uh, and you know, this was kind of last minute. You and I were talking about what we wanted to do, and I had thrown this one out there, but neither of us had a subscription. And so, you know, we were kind of waiting to the last minute to decide what we wanted to do.

And we finally decided we wanted to do this. So I signed up and, uh, I signed up late yesterday afternoon and I would have had time to watch it on my own, but my partner was like, you know what? We don’t really have anything to watch later. I’ll watch it with you. It’s cool. And we, so we watched it together and as our listeners, if they are regular listeners know my partner’s just not super into horror.

Like he doesn’t hate it. He’s just not super into it. And he just indulges me from time to time and we watched it together. And he didn’t hate it. Yeah. It’s pretty good. One of the things that he liked about it, uh, was one of the same things I liked about it. It is just so deeply entrenched in Thanksgiving.

Like it feels like a holiday movie and, and he does like holiday movies,

Todd: heartwarming holiday movies.

Craig: Krampus. Like he really likes Krampus because it’s Christmas movie and he’s big time into Christmas so we can enjoy these things together and he didn’t love it. And I don’t know that I would say that I loved it. I don’t think it was an amazing movie. I don’t even know that I would necessarily even ever have to watch it again, but it was engaging and.

Fresh and a concept that I had never seen before. And ultimately, you know, we both walked away from it feeling satisfied. Yeah. I don’t know. You know, the, the, the performances were fine. It feels very new because it is it’s 2019. It’s very clean, you know, uh, the, the, the, the video, the cinematography is very clean.

There were parts of it to me. And I suppose that technically it kind of is made for TV since it’s kind of like a streaming service original, and there were parts of it that felt a little made for TV. And maybe that had to do with the budget. I don’t know. They, they did some, some stuff with the cinematography, like weird.

Fisheye kind of stuff and weird angle kind of stuff that I didn’t really think was necessary or really added much to it. Um, but at the same time I did find it very tense. I did find it suspenseful. I knew something bad was going to happen, but I didn’t know how it was going to play out. And yeah. Uh, overall I thought it was a fun little Thanksgiving movie.

Todd: I thought the movie did a pretty good job early on of establishing a real sense of unease that never left it. It’s a bit of a slow build in the beginning, but then once it gets going, like probably the last half hour or so, 45 minutes, it really doesn’t let up on the action and the blood. And there are also some very jarring tonal shifts in the movie where

Craig: it

Todd: overall, I would say.

It kind of takes itself pretty seriously. At least the villains in this movie. They’re not winking at the audience. Um, they’re totally serious and you’re kind of waiting for that because it’s a goofy idea. However, then there are moments of the movie were just horrible things happen and that’s just that.

Then there’ll be a scene where somebody makes some goofy CLA Quip or something kind of silly happens. And

Craig: yes, it’s

Todd: just so jarring that it creates a very uncomfortable feeling. Like you kind of leave them the movie a little disturbed, at least I did, because I couldn’t completely dismiss it as, okay.

Well, that was a goofy, silly Thanksgiving movie because some really serious horrible things happened to this family. But on the other hand, I’m thinking about it. I’m like, yeah, but. But it’s kinda, it’s kinda dumb, you know, like it’s, it’s kind of, it’s clearly extreme. It’s clearly goofy, but the movie was not delivered in a way and certainly not acting in a way by the villains anyway, to, to be a tongue in cheek enterprise that you would think Pilgrim the Thanksgiving horror movie should be.

Craig: Yeah. Yeah. I, I totally smell it. You’re stepping in, like, there are parts of it where I was like, Oh, they’re being really. Clever and funny. And, and I laughed at, in those moments, but the, the stakes are still high, even though there are some kind of, you know, quippy, funny moments. It’s not all over the place.

It’s just here and there. And, and still the stakes are high. You still believe that these people are in peril even as. I don’t want to spoil the end. Um, but you know, there are some moments at the end where you really kind of see what’s coming and it is kind of goofy, but at the same time, brutal, it’s almost kinda like.

And, and not comparable in quality, but like the Texas chainsaw massacre, um, you know, that’s a, it’s a brutal movie and the stakes are high, but they’re are humorous elements to it also. Um, I don’t know I enjoyed it. It, it starts, it starts out. We kind of get this flashback, I guess, couple fighting and, and the little girl is watching.

It’s like this, it’s like a family Thanksgiving with a mother and a father and a little girl and the mother and the father are fighting. And as it turns out, I guess I never really put all this together, but it seems like this mother and father who we see fighting are the mother and father of our main character.

Whose name is Cody? This beautiful supposedly teenage girl. She looks like she’s in her twenties, but she’s gorgeous. And I guess what happened was that there had been some big fight. In a Thanksgiving past and the original mom had left. Um, and, and we didn’t, I never really, I kept expecting there to be a story about why she left, but I never.

Yeah, because they returned to this flashback a couple of times, but I never picked up, did I miss something? Did you pick up, did they explain why she left?

Todd: No, they didn’t really explain it. I think it sounds like, well, it’s her father, right? And now she has a stepmother.

Craig: Right. Right.

Todd: So I assume that that earlier argument scene was between her, her father and her real mother.

And I think based on later conversations, what had happened was that her dad was her mom left because her dad was cheating on her or something, or maybe the opposite, some kind of adult.

Craig: I don’t know. I don’t know. I just never, I just never picked up on it.

Todd: Because she has a half-brother now, now she has a new mom and her half-brothers like eight or nine years old.

So this is clearly, clearly at least, uh, eight or nine years in the future. So she must be fairly smaller feet. Aren’t even touching the ground and you’re right. They keep coming to the scene. They keep referencing it in later scenes, which was actually pretty clever because the camera starts at her feet, where all you can see is her feet and then comes up behind the chair and then kind of comes over her head.

And then that’s when it brings it into present day. Um, and this woman is played by, um, I mean, I know what a soap opera guy you are, but I’m not sure if you’re a bold and the beautiful guy, but, uh, rain Edwards is the woman playing this. And, uh, she has been in

Craig: Cody is that you’re talking about the daughter.

Todd: Yeah, the daughter. Okay.

Craig: Yeah. I can see that. She looks like a sofa for actress. She’s very beautiful.

Todd: Yeah. I mean, she was in bold and beautiful for several years, I guess a little two to almost 270 episodes. She’s in a reboot of MacGyver snowfall. Uh, the wilds TV series, which I guess is, is going to be coming out here soon.

So she’s a bit of a veteran of television, but fairly new. Veteran of television just within the last five years or so. So, uh, she’s, she’s pretty talented. You liked her performance and her character is such that she’s very modern cynical kind of no nonsense, but also pretty smart. Yeah. I thought, you know, she’s just going to call things as she sees it.

Yeah. And that I liked about her and that’s, that’s what makes the movie kind of fun and unique is that you need, you don’t often in. Horror movies get the app except for nowadays. But you know, you don’t get the woman, who’s calling it as she sees it, which leads to problems like you idiot. Don’t go up the stairs.

You idiot. They’re they’re bad. Get them out of here. You know, we’re saying, she’s saying. Yeah,

Craig: well, that’s one of the things that I liked about the movie is that I felt like she was painted very realistically as a teenage girl. Again, even though she looks older, she’s cynical, like teenagers typically are, but she’s also very woke and like that is,

Todd: yeah,

Craig: that’s, that’s kind of a crux of the movie, because another thing that I like about the movie is that the step-mom Anna in the beginning just seems like a total bitch.

Like that’s what. I wrote about her in the beginning. Like step-mom Anna is a bitch, but then as the movie goes on, I feel like the characterization becomes a little bit more well-rounded where maybe she’s a bitch, but she doesn’t have bad intentions. You know, her intentions really are good. Like she tells them.

Very early on, like within minutes, uh, of the beginning that she’s going to be bringing in this whole cast of, uh,

Todd: reenactors,

Craig: reenactors.

Todd: Yeah.

Craig: Send somebody out here. They’re going to make us a big dinner to just how they did things in the olden days. Like in the olden days, what does that even mean? It means that it will be just like the first Thanksgiving with a lot of.

Food and sharing. Oh great. Let’s honor. The whitewash history of the native American genocide. Like

Todd: that’s exactly how one’s from a break. Thank you.

Craig: Hi Cody. Well, you could try to think of this as a fun and creative way of getting back to basics, celebrating the true and important meaning of the holiday, but spending quality time together as a family, which we can all do more of.

Right, babe. And maybe this is what finally brings us together. I doubt that Anna Cody fine. I still think it’s weird though. And I don’t need a history lesson from these people. They’re talking about it over dinner and they’re eating, I don’t know a chicken or something and they finish the chicken and the dad who’s played by Kurt Smith, who I think are friends.

Simone has, I feel like she’s talked about him on the podcast before she had a huge crush on him. He was on Dawson’s Creek. He’s it’s so weird to see people from the teen shows that were on when we were like teens or in our early twenties. To see them now. And they’re like our age.

Todd: He was Carter and final destination as well.

Craig: Oh, that’s right. That’s why she talks about him.

Todd: Yeah. Yeah, that was it. And he’s not a very sympathetic character in the beginning. I mean, he’s okay. He doesn’t come across as yeah. Bad guy. He’s just completely not focused on the family. He must be doing some stock trading or something because he spends all day staring at his phone.

He’s at the table. He’s got his phone or his tablet or something with him at all times. Barely paying attention to the conversation that’s going around him yet. Interestingly enough. He’s not a caricature of this kind of person, either. Like, it’s funny that mom will have these conversations with him while he’s on his laptop or whatever.

And it seems like he’s not paying attention, but then he’ll kind of look up and go, wait, what was that? It’s a small touch. Right? But it was a nice well-rounded touch too. I never felt like this guy didn’t care about his family or was completely detached from them. He was just, as many people can get in this day and age.

Getting a little work he’s bringing work home and he can’t escape it. His mind is elsewhere. So I think the teenage daughter feels like he’s totally tuned out of her. And then she doesn’t like her. Step-mom there’s no really good reason given, except that maybe she’s just a teenager or maybe she’s just a little resentful that she’s coming to her life and her real mom was gone.

And then she has this half-brother who’s about eight years old. And his name was what was his name? Tate.

Craig: Yeah, tastes cute.

Todd: He’s cute little kid with glasses and stuff and smart and just all around. Nice. I mean, honestly, there’s nothing really terribly wrong with his family, which I thought was made it a little relatable in that.

Right. You know, there’s just a modern family and we’ve all got these minor small issues, but everyone seems to care about each other and love each other to the extent that, you know, they’re the ages they are and are able to express that,

Craig: but there is tension and they are quippy. With one another, especially the mom or the step-mom and the daughter.

And like, like you said, the dad is very preoccupied with work before you said, like ignoring his family. I was going to say, he reminds me of you just because you are somebody that works all the time. Like you’re always working, but I know. Also very much love and appreciate your family. And so I don’t get that this guy doesn’t care about his family.

I don’t get that at all. It’s just that he is busy and he says at some point, I, I don’t remember if it’s the daughter of the mom. I think it’s the daughter calls them out like. Um, they’re trying to talk to him at the dinner table and he’s on his tablet. The daughter says something like, well, God forbid, we inter we interrupt dad.

And the little brother very sincerely says, no, I never want to interrupt dad. Like, he means it. Like, I don’t want to interrupt him. Busy and the dad says something like, uh, yeah, I have to do this, this house doesn’t pay for itself. And he’s sending the daughter to a private school. He says that’s like something like $65,000 a year.

Holy shit.

Todd: Yeah. Even imagine.

Craig: Yeah. She’s skipping class. Like if I were paying $65,000 a year, I’d be pissed. If my kid was skipping class too. Yeah, but you’re right. It’s not like they seem like some horrible family. They just seem like a very modern family. And like you said, the daughter and the step-mom there’s tension between them, but not really any different than there would be between neces stereotypically,

Todd: many teenage daughter.

Craig: Yeah. Any teenage daughter and their mother, or maybe specifically their stepmother, especially if the stepmother came into their life later. So. Oh, okay. What I was trying to get at was there at dinner and, um, they finished dinner and the dad says, well, somebody should break the wishbone and Cody and Tate break the wishbone.

Uh, Cody, doesn’t say it out loud, but we hear her thoughts. Her thought her wish is I wish this whole thing would backfire in your stupid face. She’s talking about this whole Pilgrim reenactment thing.

Todd: Yeah, cause she’s all like, Oh, you know, again, Whoa, she’s all like, Oh, so we’re going to bring a, reenactor here to, uh, talk about the colonialization and you know, the oppression of, you know, she’s basically very cynical about the whole idea, which is, which is a fair point.

Craig: I know it is. It’s so interesting. Like the opening credits are played over all of this Thanksgiving propaganda that we were forced fed when we were kids, you and me, when we were kids. You know, this, this whole story of, uh, you know, the pilgrims meeting, the native Americans and the native Americans brought them Mays and turkeys and everything was peaceful.

And they sat down and they shared a meal and everything was so happy. It’s, it’s a crock. I mean, that’s, that’s not what really happened at all, but that’s exactly what I was taught, you know, and, and we were brought up making hand print turkeys and,

Todd: and. Where Indian feather headbands to put on. And some of us would pretend to be native Americans and 

Craig: paper, buckle hat, you know?

Yeah. We would make the, the construction paper, like headbands with feathers coming out.

Todd: It’s so hilarious. I was a lot of fun though. I have good memories of that, but it’s American mythology

Craig: people. In Cody’s generation are more aware of the true history of this. And the tides are turning on our whole perspective on Columbus and Thanksgiving.

And the way that we, as you know, white Europeans came over and really. Stole everything from the native Americans. And I’m not trying to get political. That’s not what this is all about, but it’s significant in the movie. The plot kind of hinges on that because the mom says these people are coming. They have this like HOA, they host the HOA meeting or something, and it’s a big deal.

The mom’s trying to impress everybody. Cody actually overhears the other HOA. Mom’s talking about. Her step mom and saying what a joke it is, you know, how pretentious she is or whatever, but then these pilgrims show up. Is this the Barker residents? Is it a year? The Thanksgiving reenactors you’re early. I wasn’t a, you weren’t supposed to, you needed time to settle in and prepare after such a long journey.

I’m sorry, I’m being rude. I’m being repeated. Come in, come in. I’m Ethan. And this here is patient and, uh, this is, uh, my daughter Cody. Well, I look forward to getting to know you over the coming days. The coming days, I thought this was just the Thanksgiving dinner. Well, uh, things are a little different with the plan, uh, but it looks like Ethan will be staying with us for a few days.

Stay. Like staying, staying in a house, this person, the, the that’s what he’s saying. Um, a motel comes to mind. We don’t know them. And then we’re introduced to these other characters who ended up being kind of consequential. And I wasn’t even really sure what the relationship was. This woman, Katherine shows up.

Did you get the impression that Katherine was like their housekeeper?

Todd: Yeah, maybe I w I wasn’t entirely sure on that one. Yeah.

Craig: It was a little unclear to me because they show up and the mom immediately says, Oh, thank God. You’re here. I need your help. I need your help. Like rearrange, rearranging the canopies or something.

Um, and she also says, As a surprise for you, patients is also going to be making your Thanksgiving dinner. Well, it turns out. That not only is Catherine potentially their housekeeper, I guess, but she also has a kid, a son who is a Cody’s boyfriend. I probably could have left them out entirely, but I don’t know they’re around.

So I figured I would mention them, but they ended up having dinner with Ethan the first night and pretty much, you know, he’s in character the whole time, which Cody finds disturbing. She even says to her dad or the step-mom or something he hasn’t broken character wants and that’s creepy. And he doesn’t, they don’t break character.

I’m not even sure if I really understand the nature of these people. I’m not sure if I understand who they are or what they are, but they do never break character and. Ethan, the Pilgrim is telling them, you know, he’s telling them all these great stories that we heard when we were kids about the first Thanksgiving dinner and blah, blah, blah.

And he refers to, um, native Americans as Indians and Cody corrects him. You mean first nation tribes and Ethan is clearly kind of irritated with her that he maintains this polite, demeanor. I mean, you can see in his eyes and in his reactions that he finds her insubordinate and disrespectful, but he never claps back.

You know, it’s always very polite. But creepy from the get-go. And later that night Cody’s in her bed and her boyfriend has snuck in and he’s hanging out with her or whatever, and she hears something and she goes out to check on her brother, who she seems to be very close to and protective of. And she finds him in his room and Ethan is in his bed.

And he’s telling him a bedtime story, you know, about when the natives or excuse me, when the pilgrims first arrived at Plymouth rock or whatever. Now, ultimately this could be entirely innocent, but if I were Cody and I were in her position and I found a grown man stranger in my little brother’s bed in the night, I wouldn’t like that either.

No, just weird. Like it’s almost as though Anna, the mom doesn’t. Get that it’s weird that they have these strangers in their house and that these strangers just have free range. And like they’re building things outside. Like Ethan builds this shit outside and it’s weird. And eventually more pilgrims start showing up, but not before skills, caster and, and the whole thing, like their whole thing.

And they say it. Outright, but in, in a subtle enough way that if you didn’t know it was a horror movie, you might not worry about it, but they keep talking about how we’re here to teach you to be grateful for what you have. And at one point, um, the little kid, uh, Tate is outside and he has found a Crow.

That is, it looked at at first, but apparently it’s not, it’s just dying. And he’s like surrounding it with rocks to try to protect it from the ants. And Ethan finds him and has a talk with them. And I don’t even remember exactly what goes down, but

Todd: he tells a story.

Craig: Oh, that’s right. The story.

Todd: Yeah, it’s a quick little story about the Krone bird.

And he says a Crow got some meat. It found some meat on the ground and started eating the meat. And then it saw a bird go by with a mouse. And that really wanted that mouse. So it left the meat and it went to go get the mouse, but the bird flew away. And then when the Crow came back to the meat, the meat was gone.

And so he said, so what does this mean? Tate says, well, this means that, you know, the bird, he got greedy, he wanted the mouse and now he has nothing. Right. Uh, and so he should have just been thankful for what he had. And, uh, Ethan looks at the sky like he’s looking to God and smiles and says, ah, thank goodness.

Finally, someone who I could teach to be thankful. And I didn’t have to take everything away from them.

Craig: Yup. Yup.

Todd: So I kind of assumed this was where it was going and that was so on the nose confirming it that I thought. Wow. Okay. All right. So this is, this is it. And that was exactly what I expected. So in that way, I actually wasn’t terribly surprised with the direction the movie took.

I was just a little more surprised at how it ended up playing out.

Craig: Oh yeah. I felt the exact same way. I mean, I knew exactly where it was going. It’s almost like, um, the purge, uh,

Todd: it looks like saw.

Craig: Yeah.

Todd: That’s I mean, that’s the whole

Craig: M wraps though,

Todd: but no, but it’s the

Craig: whole, Oh no, you’re right. You’re right.

Todd: It’s the whole reason. In fact, you know, it’s funny because the director of, of the movie, um, Marcus Dunstan, who also co-wrote the story. Oh, he also wrote and directed the collector and the,

Craig: that whole series. Yeah.

Todd: Yeah. But he actually, I wrote the screenplay for saw four or five and six, uh, and the final chapter.

So, um, he’s, well-versed in this idea. Probably the ideal person to bring in on a project like

Craig: this. You’re right. That’s Jigsaw’s emo too. He’s trying to teach people a lesson. I had forgotten about that. I was just focused on the whole traps thing, but you’re right. That’s his Mo

Todd: yeah, that’s his demo. And that got me thinking actually, Craig, if we ever do run out of Thanksgiving stories, I guess based on that we could start doing the sauce series for Thanksgiving.

We could have a whole like eight years worth of saw movies. For Thanksgiving,

Craig: just prior to this CRO incident, we had seen patients in Katherine’s house making her an herbal tea, which of course is very homogenous, but Catherine is complaining about her life. In a totally low key way. Like all of us do not complaining about anything.

I wouldn’t say she’s, she’s searching for pity. She’s just kind of talking about how life is hard for her, because she’s a single mom and she really doesn’t have much money. And, um, her son’s a teenager and it’s getting harder to control him and, and she can’t even. Say too much to him. Cause she would be a hypocrite because she was wild when she was a kid too.

And so she’s not complaining about anything that we don’t all complain about all the time, but patients clearly is like pissed off about it.

Todd: I mean, sometimes

Craig: life, you know, just sucks. You have all of this. I mean you have shelter and all the food you could eat, it is quite

Todd: miraculous.

Craig: Ethan teaches us to appreciate because he knows what it means to have nothing at all.

Well, I am a glass half empty type, so good luck with me. Ethan changed everything for me.

Well for you too. And I get it. Like, I understand they’re not wrong. These, these pilgrims it’s wrong to murder and kill people, but they’re not wrong in that we do all kind of complain about things. And fail to recognize, uh, you know, how much we have  it’s true. We’re all guilty of it. The next time we see Catherine she’s dead and patience is like churning blood or something.

And, um, eventually Cody finds, uh, her boyfriend dead too. So that family is killed and that’s when we get. Back to the family and we stay with them pretty much the whole time. The only thing that we didn’t mention is at one point, Tate has gone out Berry picking with Ethan and Tatum. Ethan actually kind of have a positive relationship.

Like they like each other and they enjoy spending time with one another and they go out and they pick these berries and take those to grab some, to eat them. And Ethan grabs his hand and says, no, not those. Those are Jerusalem cherries. They’re highly poisonous. I don’t remember why they collected them in the first place.

I don’t know if it was just supposed to be decoration or what, but, you know, even in the moment, like it’s slapping you in the face, like, obviously this is going to be important later, so just wanted to bring that up. But then patients comes back to their house and says, Catherine went on a bender. Because she has had struggles with alcohol before, but she’s been clean for a while, but patient says she went on a bender and she took them with her and they’re gone.

Cody of course is very suspicious of this and goes to check on it. But then all these other pilgrims show up at the house and that’s when it becomes basically just a Pilgrim home invasion. That’s what it is for the rest of the time.

Todd: Well, they’ve colonized their home. Yeah. And, and yeah, it seems like a weird, I mean, like you said, by the, even by the end of the movie, we don’t even truly know the nature of these people, but it comes across as this weird cult type thing maybe led by Ethan.

But yeah, there are more pilgrims in the house and she goes into her dad’s study and her dad is in there talking with like a council of older pilgrims. They’re all smoking pipes. And he’s like, yeah, they’re going to help me rebuild the garage. I’m going to move my office out there. I’m not going to bother you guys anymore.

You know, which is kind of funny actually, ironically, that’s like the last thing his father needs is to get even more distant from his family by moving his office out to the garage. And they’re women in the, in the kitchen cooking up meals. But. Everybody’s very stern faced and very few people are talking.

In fact, almost nobody is talking and patients herself is just flat out creepy from the get-go.

Craig: She is,

Todd: her eyes are just, Oh God, she’s played by Elise Levis, Levis skew. And she’s been in quite a few things. I mean, I, I didn’t recognize her outright, but yeah. She’s been in a lot of horror movies, a lot of TV and some stuff like that, quite a resume behind her, but in this, and again, like we said, at the very beginning of this, they are so dead serious and she is so dead serious and her eyes are just so piercing.

She just looks like the sternest woman on the earth and nothing makes her happy and it’s creepy.

Craig: It is and juxtaposed with the fact that she too is very beautiful, but she’s so she she’s so stern and so puritanical, you know, and the way that she behaves and the way that she dresses and whatnot, but she is so chilling, like when she’s telling them.

About how Catherine ran away because she was on a bender or whatever she says in front of Cody and Anna, if only she was happy with what she had. She should be seen as a warning

Todd: that’s right.

Craig: Just it, it is very creepy. And the, the main girl Cody says to Anna, this doesn’t feel right. It doesn’t feel safe and she goes off to check on her boyfriend and then seeing.

All of the pilgrims, like moving things around her house and like hanging up like idols and weird things. Anna is done with it too. Eventually. She’s like, you know, this is too far. And she goes looking for her husband and she finds her husband and she says, I can’t find the kids. I can’t find Tate. So they go to look for Tate together, but they’re headed off.

By patients and Ethan and patient says, we’ve run out of some spice. Why don’t you go to the store to get some? And they, the parents say, uh, yeah, that’s a good idea. We’ll just grab the kids and, and it’ll be a family deal. And they’re like, no, the kids can stay here. And they’re like, well, where are they?

They’re safe. Okay. But where are they? They’re safe. And then all of the pilgrims like converge around them. And Ethan looks at, Anna says, you afraid of shit.

It’s just Thanksgiving.

why they didn’t put that line in the trailer. I we’ll never

Todd: God, two amazing lines of this movie. The other one we’re going to get to soon. I think

Craig: so good. But then it’s just kind of bat shit crazy from then on.

Todd: Yeah from then it’s it’s nuts. Um, I think the next thing that happens is they both wake up and they’re tight. Oh, they’re tied up in stocks, right in, uh, in the backyard.

They’ve got them in these old timey stocks in the backyard. And Anna says what I was thinking the whole time. She said, Won’t everybody else hear what’s going on. And Athens like, well, that’s the point or something. And, and that’s one of the goofy things about this movie is all this crazy stuff happens at this house.

And there’s not a single neighbor who apparently notices it or wakes up, or maybe they’re trying to make a comment here too. You know, it’s a super rich. Nobody cares, subdivision, whatever. So Ethan just gives him this long lecture about how they need to be thankful. And what about how he’s going to teach them patients that thank you.

Craig: You will Rue the day. You didn’t see what was right in front of you

through the day. I love it.

Todd: He’s whipping the dad and then, um, he gets a branding iron out with a B on it, and brand’s a big B and Anna’s back. Oh gosh, it’s just, it’s just intense.

Craig: I will say that this is one of the moments where I thought that they went overboard with the stylization and the. In the cinematography, like they tried to do weird things with like, I don’t even know  you mean the camera?

Like the weird closeups of the pilgrims, like laughing and stuff. I mean, if it were a dream sequence, Mm, maybe, but here, it just seemed a little over the top. Like, I don’t need that. Like the fact that they’re whipping and branding these people is scary enough. I don’t need the intense fish eye closeups of them.

Maniacally laughing.

Todd: Um,

Craig: yeah. Ruined it for me. It did call attention to itself. Yes.

Todd: And then the kids get back there. Right. And I think, um, Tate ends up running away and hiding where Cody goes, looking for Tate. She comes back, she comes through the house. She doesn’t see her parents in the backyard, but she sees the house was full of pilgrims.

And they have this knocking thing that they do this game that they play, where she’ll knock twice and he’ll run and hide. He’ll knock once. And so as they knock back and forth, she tries to find him. And so she uses this to find him hiding in the closet. And then the pilgrims start to come up the stairs and find Cody.

So she says, you stay here in the closet, just promise me, you won’t leave. And he’s like, okay. And so we don’t see Cody for awhile cause he’s stuck in a closet

Craig: and Cody goes downstairs and finds her parents in the stocks and gets them out. Um, like there’s nobody around at first, but then this huge guy who has only identified himself as the builder attacks, and there’s actually a really good fight scene where the mom, the dad and Cody fight the builder and they are like jumping on him like spider monkeys.

And he’s huge. So he just keeps. Throwing them off, but eventually they get him down on the ground and the dad picks up a big rock and like smashes his head. But he’s so big that it has very little effect on him. So you see them all like just real quick grabs something that they can bludge in him with and they do.

They just stand around and bludgeoned him to death. And when it’s all over, the dad says, can we just partner. As a family,

it was silly and stupid, but it was funny. And then there’s some more like dumb family bonding as they’re like planning on how they’re going to get in the house. And. Cody runs around to go in the front. I think, and the mom and dad are gonna climb in the window on a trellis and the mom gets in, but then when the dad gets up, um, he realizes that the pilgrims have been waiting and they actually have the mom, Ethan stabs him in the hand and then pushes them off the roof.

And then. Patients access him in the head and well, access him somewhere. And he’s dead now at this point, I didn’t know what I expected to happen after the, did we just murder as a family? I kind of thought that maybe they were all going to get through it and that it was going to be like, Oh, we survived this as a family initially.

My prediction. I turned to Alan and I said, here’s my prediction. Cody’s going to live. But both the parents are going to get killed and the pilgrims are going to take Tate with them when they go. That was my predict.

Todd: Interesting.

Craig: Not at all how it turns out,

but that’s what I thought. So I was a little bit surprised when the dad got killed here. I was too. And, and, you know, it remains pretty dark like Cody and Anna both get caught and bound up in chairs and, uh, patients scolds Anna for being so concerned with her image and they put, uh, Cody in a dunking chair.

Yeah, I kind of assume everybody knows what that is, but the Puritans used these to punish people, specifically women and women who were charged with witchcraft and whatever. And it’s just a big Seesaw basically. And there’s a chair on one end and they would dunk women under water. And often it would result in the woman’s death.

Um, but they’re doing this to Cody and when they would bring her up, she keeps saying, what do you want? And, uh, Ethan saying, Your gratitude. And he was giving me major Rutger, Hauer vibes. Oh

Todd: yeah. From the Hitcher.

Craig: Yeah. Yeah. And, uh, but, but eventually she keeps saying, I I’m grateful. I’m grateful. I’m grateful.

And they let her out.

Todd: Well, I just need a break in here to say really quick that there’s some amazing cinematography during this moment where the camera is on her. It, and it follows her down into the water. And I mean, it doesn’t, you know, you wouldn’t know unless you’re into this or, you know, you know anything about photography or whatever it would be.

It’s very difficult to just go from out of the water, into the water and out of the water again, and for it to be so clear and so good as it was. And actually this was something, one of the, of the director was it was interviewed. And he said that was one of the scenes he was most proud of. And he was really proud of the fact that most of this movie, it was a lower budget film, obviously.

And almost everything in it was practical. He said pretty much the only thing we did was he raised some Palm trees in the backyard digitally, but, uh, you know, he said, especially that he had a pretty. A pretty talented crew from Blumhouse that could manage to put this particular scene together and get this photography right.

Was remarkable, uh, from a technical standpoint, really, really pretty good. And it’s, I think it’s kind of intense too, because at this point, because the dad’s been asked and by the way, I don’t, the rest of the family doesn’t know the dad’s been asked. Nope. But. Because the dad’s been asked now you realize, well, it’s not going to end up that way and this could go anyway.

So now the stakes are really high for us as we’re watching. And I thought it’s possible. They might kill off. Who’s the person who seems to be the central character in the show. So it was a good scene.

Craig: I thought so, too, at this point I was thinking that they might all die and that the pilgrims might just walk off into the sunset to do this again elsewhere.

Todd: Yeah.

Craig: I re I really wasn’t sure, but after the whole dunking chair thing, they say, we’ve given you a gift. It’s time to prepare the feast. And Tate is still around like hiding and watching. And so they start this feast and gosh, I don’t remember

Todd: taking it back down there. I don’t remember either. I remember that they’ve got the women preparing, they’re asking Anna to shuck corn and they’re asking Cody to smash the berries.

Craig: Right. Which is important. Right.

Todd: Which is very important. She’s smashing the berries and there’s kind of a up on those, those, you know, Jerusalem berries we saw earlier. So yeah. We knew something was brewing here, and then there must be a noise or something upstairs. I can’t remember because at some point, at some point patients goes upstairs and goes looking for Tatum.

Craig: Yeah. But at some point here, Cody, somehow, I guess, because her hands are free because they’ve got her working, she grabs an ice pick and stabs patients in the head

Todd: threw her hand into her head.

Craig: Yeah. And Anna like throws flour on the fire, which causes a distraction and they both run and Cody’s looking for tape that they, they immediately capture Anna again.

But then patients just pulls the pic out of her head and she’s fine. And we’re not saying like they tapped her on the head with it. Like it was stabbed a good four or five inches into her head and she pulls it out and she’s fine for a while. And she never did. Dies of that. Like what that’s. So again, I was like, what, at this point I’m like, Oh, well, are they ghosts?

Like, are they super natural? And in the end, I really still don’t know. No, because that makes no sense. It makes no sense that she could just be fine.

Todd: Absolutely not. I thought it was like a comedic thing. I, at first, when, you know, w after she pulls it off and says, I’m fine, I’m thinking, Oh, Hardy, har har, like this woman’s practically lobotomized.

Anyway, that’s her personality. Right. You know, gets an ice pick to the brain. It hardly makes a difference.

Craig: That’s so funny. That’s what Alan said too. He’s like, that’s how they do Labatt dummies.

They ended up getting them back. I mean, they, they capture everybody and they get everybody back and they get them back to the table and then they serve up on a silver platter, you know, the entree and they pull off the bell jar, you know, on top of it. And it’s there. Dad’s head.

Todd: It. I mean, we, you saw coming a mile away. Right. But also, cause he’s like, your father will, will provide for you this morning, this evening. And it’s so cute too, because you can kind of tell that it’s just. His head stuck up through the table was, yeah.

Craig: I mean, in the credits, they, they show like outtakes and you see him goofing around.

Todd: It’s pretty funny, but it’s, it’s supremely disturbing, you know, it really is.

Craig: Well, and they’re force feeding them. Like they’re trying to stick meat in their mouths and stuff. It is silly cinematography and it’s hilarious music. It’s like elementary school celebratory Thanksgiving.

Todd: Oh yeah. It’s kind of gospely sort of like a, almost like a hymn, right.

It comes in and out quite a few times. And I was a little surprised, you know, that, that dichotomy is interesting. I remember in Krampus getting some of that too, where you have your cheery Christmas hymns. Really dark things are happening and that’s always a little disturbing, but yeah, it was a really nice choice of music I thought

Craig: and, and all that’s going on.

And then all of a sudden, all of the pilgrims start choking and vomiting blood, and we see that Cody had put the poison berries into the sauce. She looks at Ethan and says, I hope you appreciate them.

Todd: Correct

Craig: then they’re going on. And like they’re all projectile vomiting and it’s so funny because we all know how this effect works. Like they’re putting their hands up by their face, obviously to hide the hose that is spewing blood.

Todd: Trauma level vomiting, blood it’s like fire hoses coming out of their mouth.

And it’s really funny. It’s but it’s a ton of blood also. Yeah.

Craig: And then, and Ethan are like trying to chase them around, but, um, Tate untitled, Cody, Ethan jumps out the window for some reason, patients and Anna have a fight and she uses her. Dad’s head

Todd: he’s her with her dad’s head.

Craig: She ends up stabbing her in the throat and Anna brands, Ethan, um, which is. Satisfying. And then I don’t remember. I think it’s Cody, but it could have been the mom, somebody says, why did you know it is Cody? She says, why did you do this? And Ethan says, isn’t this what you wished for?

Yes, happy Thanksgiving. And then he dies. And the camera shows that he has the wishbone in his hand. So just so just like Krampus, it’s like. She summoned this unwittingly and I don’t know, maybe they learned a lesson and then there are really funny credits without takes and really funny. Stills from outtakes.

Um, it’s funny. And I ultimately, when it was over, I just thought it was a fun ride. It was fun and interesting. It wasn’t amazing. It’s not going to win any awards, but it was entertaining and you know, we’ve looked and we’ve to be fair. We have found a couple of Thanksgiving movies that we’ve enjoyed talking about.

Not that they were good movies, but what was blood feast was that?

Todd: Well, blood rage still one of my favorite, one of my favorite episodes, actually I go back. Listen to that a lot. I love that.

Craig: That was a good one. There was another one where it was like a bunch of assholes were having like a friends giving, like on a ranch.

And then there was a serial killer who injected meth into his eyes. That one

Todd: who was body by Jake.

Craig: Those were both fun to talk about. But in terms of quality, this is really a more. Solid movie. And I think that it has a wider appeal as a higher quality film. Again, not a masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination, but fun and seasonal.

And I enjoyed it

Todd: and, you know, It was just dark enough also to, to really mess with your emotions a bit and to be disturbing. It wasn’t just all good. Ha ha funny pilgrims, come in, kill people Thanksgiving. Now you better be thankful. Right. You know, it, it, it was dark in twisted enough that. Yeah, I just, you know, it kind of bothered me afterwards and then I had to shake it off and go, come on Todd, it’s a stupid movie about Thanksgiving, real crimps coming in from beyond apparently or whatever, that little ambiguity at the end.

I really liked as well. That that really tied it up quite nicely. It was like a nice little cherry on top. I thought,

Craig: well, and it’s not a bad message. I mean, I think that it’s a good message to remind us, you know, be grateful for what you have real. I mean,

Todd: we’re, we’ll come in to murder you and your whole family.

Craig: I mean, it couldn’t be worse. Pilgrims could come murder your family, be grateful for what you have in there. Spirit of Thanksgiving. I am grateful for the things I have. I’m grateful to have roof over my head and a job that provides for me and, um, uh, somebody to share my life with who I love and dogs who I love and.

Great friends like you, who, uh, I can always turn to in times of need and you know, even simple little things like this podcast that, uh, you know, it really does bring me joy to talk to you every week and also to hear from other people around the world who listened to what we do and enjoy it. It blows my mind.

Um, and I am grateful for all of you listeners, thanks for, for supporting us. Uh, I never, in my wildest dreams thought that we would still be doing this years and years into it. Never thought we would, but here we are as much as Todd and I, and just enjoy doing this for ourselves. And I can only speak for myself.

I don’t think what we would still be doing it. If it weren’t. For those of you who reach out to us and talk to us, it it’s. It’s cool.

Todd: It is cool. Thank you. Thank you, Craig. You took all the words out of my mouth. Uh, I feel like a anticlimactic ending to this thing.

No, Greg, I’m thankful for you as well. Thankful for the opportunity to do this and also thankful for all the great things I have, especially at this time when you know, we have a lot to examine, we have a lot of trouble. And worry going on around the world, at least many of us still have things that we can hold on to that we’re thankful for despite the trials and tribulations we’re going through now.

So yeah, sometimes it takes a horror movie to remind you that.

Craig: Yep.

Todd: Thank you so much for listening to this podcast. If you enjoyed it, please, in the spirit of the holiday, share it with a friend.

Reach out to us as Craig said, because we’re so thankful for your comments. You can find us on Facebook. You can just Google us and you’ll find our website, two guys.red, 40 nest.com where you can leave a comment, leave us a request. And, uh, we’ve got Christmas coming up really soon. So we’re getting ready to prepare a nice batch of Christmas horror movies for you as we always do.

So if you have some good ideas, some things that we haven’t done yet send those along to us and we’ll put them on the list until next time. I’m Todd.

Craig: And I’m Craig.

Todd: with two guys and a chainsaw.

2 Responses

  1. Emily Hunter says:

    I’m so glad you covered this film! I saw the preview for it a few weeks ago and immediately added it to my watch list for Thanksgiving. It’s tradition for me an my boyfriend to watch Blood Rage every Turkey Day, and then spout off, “That’s not cranberry sauce” every chance we can, and now we decided to add Pilgrim to our traditional movie lineup!

    We were pleasantly surprised with the movie, from the plot and story line, to it’s “wokeness”, to it’s funny quips. I’ll definitely stay away from Jerusalem sauce!

    • toddkuhns says:

      Haha, that’s fantastic Emily! Thanks for the comment. I still think Blood Rage is the best Thanksgiving horror movie though. That Jerusalem sauce…it’s not cranberry sauce, haha!

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