A Deadly Invitation review: Mexican whodunnit is weak and rushed

In A Deadly Invitation, the host of a true crime podcast takes it upon herself to solve the case of her sister’s murder in a posh villa where all of the guests are suspects. The movie is now streaming on Netflix.


Agatha Hernández, the host of the popular true-crime podcast Unsolved Crimes, in which she solves crimes no one has solved before, is invited by her half-sister Olivia to the latter’s villa, Villa Elisa.

Agatha and Olivia will be meeting after a long time. Agatha wonders what this is about. Upon arriving at Villa Elisa, Agatha learns that she is not the only one invited to the villa.

Olivia has invited some of her friends. The catch is that they all have a history with each other and have motives to kill each other. Olivia takes them on a yacht and teases that one of them will not return to the villa alive.

Things take a turn when Olivia ends up dead. With the murder taking place in waters between two police jurisdictions and a transmission tower down, which won’t allow anyone to have outside communications, everyone is forced to stay until the murder is solved.

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Agatha decides to hurry up the process by investigating the case herself. She is joined by a lieutenant who is seeking a promotion by solving this case.


Regina Blandón, who plays Agatha Hernández, balances between being a sister and a detective. Initially, when Agatha comes to the villa, Blandón manages to appear as the sister who is curious about the whereabouts of her sister.

However, later, when Agatha has to be a detective, Blandón never fully shines as one. Somewhere, Blandón lacks the confidence and determination of a detective. Her pairing with Juan Pablo de Santiago, who plays Lieutenant Julián, doesn’t have a spark either.

The rest of the cast gives an average performance. There is nothing memorable about their performances, even though the movie tries hard to make everyone important.


A Deadly Invitation offers a quick watch around the 90-minute duration, which is enough to solve the kind of mystery the film is exploring.

The film also has fewer characters as suspects as compared to other films and shows in the same genre. Furthermore, the creators are aware of which characters should get more screen time and importance.


A Deadly Invitation doesn’t pack the punch and fun that other films and shows in this genre do. It does claim, at the start of the film, that viewers should notice each and every small detail, but in the end, the viewers are not allowed to theorize and connect dots by themselves. Even the revelations that these hints carry don’t feel that important.

During the climax, it feels like Agatha puts the information collected in front of everyone and solves the case. The hassle that she went through feels less important and almost skippable.

The characters in the film aren’t fleshed out either. The viewers never get a chance to know them and like them to any extent. Hence, they will care less about them.


Even though this formulaic plot has been working brilliantly for movies and television shows lately, A Deadly Invitation fails to make the best of it. It feels rushed and eager to reach its conclusion. Hence, none of the characters leave an impression on the viewers.

A Deadly Invitation
A Deadly Invitation review: Mexican whodunnit is weak and rushed 1

Director: José Manuel Cravioto

Date Created: 2023-10-06 12:30

Editor's Rating:

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