4 items from 2016
As society continues to further the threshold of technological advancement, horror cinema must adapt accordingly. More than any other genre, horror films mirror social phenomenons to exploit generational norms. Wireless carriers rarely drop service, smartphones can be tracked via Gps locators, handheld devices can research data on-the-spot – it’s getting harder and harder for on-screen killers to dupe victims these days. That’s why movies like Unfriended, The Den and Cam2Cam have ushered in a new cyber-terror scourge, something that Simon Verhoeven’s Friend Request looks to upgrade.
Alycia Debnam-Carey stars as Laura, a popular college co-ed with a healthy social following on Facebook (it’s never spoken, but it’s Facebook). Out of the blue one night, she receives a friend request from one of her loner classmates (Marina Mills, played by Liesl Ahlers). Laura initially sees no harm in befriending the quiet new student, and spends the »
- Matt Donato
Friend Request, 2016.
Directed by Simon Verhoeven.
Enjoying college life as a popular student, Laura shares everything with her more than 800 friends on Facebook. But one day, after accepting a friend request from a social outcast named Marina, Laura’s life is cursed, and her closest friends begin dying cruel deaths. Before her time is up, Laura must solve the mystery behind Marina and her Facebook profile, in order to break the deadly spell.
The idea of Internet Killers has been popular in the horror genre for nearly fifteen years, and no one has yet to really get one right. Going back to Feardotcom and .com for Murder back in 2002 and all the way through Antisocial, Pulse, Chain Letter and the ungodly awful Smiley, it just seems like no can nail what makes the Internet a scary place. »
- Luke Owen
Take the trip down south and experience the hot tropical nights in Sundown, which arrived on DVD (plus Digital), Digital HD and On Demand August 16 from Lionsgate. The hilarious action- packed comedy follows two high school seniors who are ready for an epic spring break in exotic Puerto Vallarta – but things take an outrageous turn when the two get tangled up with a local gangster. Starring Devon Werkheiser, Sean Marquette, Camilla Belle, Silverio Palacios, Sara Paxton, Reid Ewing, with Teri Hatcher, John Michael Higgins and Jordi Mollà, and featuring music from Steve Aoki, Paul Oakenfold, Chris Lake and Adrian Lux, Sundown will be available on DVD for the suggested retail price of $19.98. Written by Miguel Tejada-Flores & Fernando Lebrija. Directed by Fernando Lebrija.
Best buds Logan and Blake jet to exotic Puerto Vallarta over spring break, hoping to hook up with their crushes. But after Logan meets a local beauty named Gaby, »
- Tom Stockman
Social media and horror cinema meet again, in Friend Request. Here's our review...
It is my understanding that young people today think Facebook is rubbish and favour apps like Snapchat to exchange misspelled insults and pictures of their sexual organs, so here’s a timely bit of techno-horror to crack the 'millennial' market. In fairness, Friend Request doesn’t mention Facebook once, but it does use every bit of terminology we associate with it, along with its fonts, layout and colour scheme. This illustrates just how embedded into everyday life Facebook’s verbal and visual grammar is, and Friend Request even finds time to be a bit scary every now and then.
There’s still a part of me that can’t watch characters using the internet or smartphones on film without wincing a little. It still feels like a cheat to me when used as a plot device, »
4 items from 2016
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