Kind buffs host went to innumerable supper gatherings that end up tilting into frenzy, but then the chills arrive before the actual arranged time and frequently in “The Invitation,” a teasingly compelling thriller that fabricates a noteworthy level of pressure throughout its 99-minute running time. Set amid a secretive gathering among old companions where something is tangibly not right, this all around acted, wonderfully tweaked exercise speaks to executive Karyn Kusama’s most grounded work in years, uncovering a certification of tone, specialty and reason that haven’t been in confirmation since her Sundance prize-winning introduction, “Girlfight” (2000). More celebrations are liable to amplify invitations of their own after The Invitation debut, while better than average informal exchange ought to impel this imaginable unobtrusive theatrical entertainer into strong VOD turn.
A disturbing introduction finds Will (Logan Marshall-Green, “Prometheus”) and his g.f., Kira (“Center of Nowhere”), winding their way through the Hollywood Hills one night, made a beeline for a gathering at the chic, gated chateau of David and Eden, whom they haven’t seen in no less than two years. Upon their entry, they are welcomed warmly if a touch clumsily by their hosts, and also by a gathering of old buddies that at first recommends a shallow cross-area of upscale L.A. society: There’s the benevolent, flippant gay couple; the Asian-American excellence; and the adorably larger measured entertainment. Some casual conversation follows, greased up by numerous glasses of red wine, and by Eden and David’s excessively strong request that their visitors unwind and have a ball.