Cyber-bullying is an epidemic in this country that must be stopped! We’ve seen the documentaries, heard the ads, we’ve seen the result of most of the victims which is usually heartbreaking. So I’m just glad we have another anti bullying movie, but this time with an added twist. The victim comes back as a vengeful spirit to kill you! If this movie doesn’t stop cyber-bullying I don’t know what will!
In this up-to-date horror flick we have a cast of teenagers group chatting through Skype with one unknown, unwanted guests. When trying to get rid of the intruder, they discover that the troll is using the account of Laura Barns. A girl who, after an insanely humiliating video of her was leaked, committed suicide. Another discovery they make is that today is…*gulp* the anniversary of her death!
For a moment can I just stop there? Because I want to make something perfectly clear at this point. Right here is where the cliché-ness ends. I know, know we’ve got the group of obnoxious teenagers a vengeful spirit coming back after being wronged on the day of her death all that’s missing is a thunderstorm and an abandoned building. But we don’t get that with Unfriended. No, instead we get a haunting through, Facebook, Skype, iMessage, Spotify, your downloaded music, even the occasional pop-up ads! And to be quite honest, it was actually pretty cool to see horror play out like this!
We have our main character Blair played by Shelly Hennig (Ouija, The Secret Circle*Series), her boyfriend Mitch Roussel played by Moses Jacob (About a Boy*Series, Sketchy*Series) and their friends Jess Felton, Adam Sewell, Val Rommel and Ken Smith. Played by, Renee Olstead (The Midnight Game, Bling Ring, Cozmo’s), Will Peltz (Men, Women and Children, In Time, As Cool as I Am) Courtney Halverson (The Hammer, Godspeed, Red Clover) and Jacob Wysocki (Oitch Perfect, Terri, Fat Kids Rule the World).After several unsuccessful attempts at getting rid of the intruder and after the discovery that Laura’s account is still in use the unknown guest asks to play a game. A kind of truth game, loser dies.
Yes I know we’re going back to the cliché thing again. The movie Scream comes to mind. But this is different. The caller is not inside your house, but inside your computer. Unfriended brings a tense and suspenseful kind of horror through Blairs, frantic and sometimes hesitant instant messages. A loading document keeps you on the edge of your seat. The computer freezes and Blairs sole connection to her friends is temporarily gone. Even the usual Skpye glitches look more menacing!
Laura’s objective, of course is that everyone in some shape or form was responsible for her choice to end her life. Some say she deserved it because Laura was also accused of being a bully, but all of Blair’s friend’s have something to hide. Though personally I felt kind of bad for Jess…I don’t know if it was because she hardly said anything throughout the film or what but it honestly just felt like she was in the wrong group chat at the wrong time. Oh well.
Rated R for violent content, pervasive language, some sexuality, drug and alcohol use, all involving teens.
As of now Rotten Tomatoes has this cyber horror at a 64% fresh.Not bad.
Might I add, there’s also a kind of bittersweet (more bitter than sweet) ending where Blair is begging the angry spirit to forgive them. Screaming how they used to be friends, they used to be happy together. Laura is sure to emphasize the ‘used to’ part to Blair. But it makes me think there was another chunk of the story that we’re missing. Or maybe it doesn’t matter. Anyway, I recommend this movie for any horror seeker out there. It’s not the old school stuff. But it’s definitely a thrill to look forward to!