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27 out of 41 people found the following review useful:

So gutted...............

2/10
Author: Sneekythief
29 October 2016

I couldn't believe what I watched. What did I watch? No, really what was this tripe? I seriously do NOT know.A "B" Movie of the lowest standard. To see the 7+ Score was convincing enough for me to watch this soppy nonsense and to be honest I have a very,very small IQ and even this was in overdrive melt down trying to understand who,why and for what reason they made this excuse of a movie? Now I'm not doubting that a good few reviewers enjoyed the movie,which is their right if they found it entertaining but,me.for one would like to tell any prospective viewer who expects a decent hour and twenty minute ride of excitement or even a decent story line is,they would have more fun munching on loft insulation!The film is set on the USA's way to cull the population in a post apocalyptic world,sadly the film would have had been more fun and more meaningful set now,current day,where the Americans tackle the major problem of obesity by Thinning out the population!!

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15 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Short, Simple, & Average

4/10
Author: blacktigerleader
22 October 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

To summarize my review in advance; The Thinning is a dystopian science fiction movie that has some superb moments, but lacks the wholeness of a truly great or good movie.

To begin, The Thinning is about a dystopian society that takes place sometime after a major global warming event that left the Earth's landmass much too small for it's population. In response, the nations of the world came up with different ways to reduce the growth and size of their population. While other countries resorted to ending the lives of those of old age or limiting family size to one child, the U.S. decided to adopt a program that would only allow the smartest children to survive.

Right after this introduction is where the movie began to fall apart. The backstory for the characters was interesting, however it did not successfully help the viewer "attach" to the story of the reader. When tragedy strikes near the beginning of the movie, it's hard to feel the characters emotions. I did not feel connected with the characters, only amused by them.

There are also many minor details that fail to bring this movie up to par. You have to wonder why many students take a backpack to simply take a test on a notebook. You also wonder why the students (before and after) seem to be either lackadaisical towards the test and it's consequences or extremely anxious. They seem very emotionally inconsistent about the fact that many students will be put to death a mere hour or so after the test.

Another thing I found annoying about this movie was the poorly written script. It was quite simply... simple. There were no memorable lines and everything was quite frankly something you've heard before. I should note something important here... a movie does not need memorable lines; it needs emotionally relevant and imaginatively excellent lines. At many points, the lines were simply "decent," and at more rare parts of the movie, the lines felt like reading the words "good" or "bad" in an English essay.

Now on to some of the things I enjoyed. I enjoyed a few moments where the acting was on par with the importance of the scene. When the students had just taken the test, you can see their anxiety, relief, and unique responses to show their emotions. I also enjoyed the color pallet used in the movie. It was relevant and consistently aided to the intensity of the movie.

The last two things I enjoyed were the camera shots, which were not exceptional, rather simply nice. The editing and music also aided to the importance of the story.

I did enjoy parts of this movie, however these parts were the minority of a more-often-than-not simple and dull movie.

(NOTE: I believe in completely fair reviews. I am against giving 1 or 10 star reviews based on the current rating and my personal belief if it is too high or not. I encourage everyone to have someone check their rating against their thoughts about the movie to see if they align. That is how you should properly rate a movie. Share the word!)

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15 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

Good concept, but flawed

6/10
Author: forbaidulotto from United States
25 October 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Sadly, I fear that none of the editor, writer or producer etc will make it pass the thinning, as they are no doubt failing their social study and/or math class.

The movie is, at the very least, entertaining. The acting is pretty good and it attempted to paint a complete world picture of how and why things are happening. If we were to disregard certain details, the story could be believable, there are always last resort measures when we are faced with potential extinction should we choose not to act. The elements of politics, special interest, and others makes the movie mirror our own world, making it more believable.

But unfortunately, they didn't think things through and tried too hard on certain aspects, and the illusion fell apart.

The premise, or rather concept of the back story, that the world requires de-population, is a reasonable one. In fact, one of the suggested method of limiting birth have been practiced by, most famously, China for quite a long time. Unfortunately, the goal was set at an unreasonable high point of 5% annually. This will be explained at the of the review for those who care for numbers.

The setting and content of the movie also contains some paradoxes. While morally speaking, culling of the inferior is always questionable at best, there are many examples of how it can be done. Objectively speaking, if someone has to die, it "should" be those who cannot contribute to society. For example, the old and infirm like Hitler did, he's not a good guy by any stretch of the term but the choice was logical. Now, age does carry with it wisdom, so outright killing people based on age would make no sense, thou was presented as an option in the movie. However, with the contrast of killing the young generation of the future, somehow the main character's mother, someone who is I believe terminally ill and appear quite useless did not make it onto any form of culling list makes no sense. Given the premise of the "world" in the story, it felt like a rather forced sob story that is completely unrealistic in-universe.

Another character of interest is Mr.Football star. In the real worlds, colleges and universities accept people on a variety of criteria, not all academic, because society needs different types of people. While I can't say I like the character as a person, it doesn't make any sense that someone with special talents of any form, even if one that is useless in terms of "production and innovation", would be judged strictly the same way in a standardized test. That said, this could be a result of political compromise. The matter of life and death is serious business, so the allowance of special talent leads to potential of abuse so laws were made rigid in order to prevent them. Unfortunately, that didn't quite go as planned. If that is the case however, then there is the problem of what if there are genius students who excel in one or few subject matter and would have contributed greatly to society but was unfortunately culled due to failing every other subject? Standardized testing have never been and never will be a perfect form of measurement. This is more of a food for thought than anything else.

Now, the numbers I promised. 5% annually might not seem much at a glance, but the fact is, if the goal is reached, global population will be halved in 13 years, so within one generation, we will be left with only 25% of the population that we started with. Even if we assume that there is over 10 billion people at the start, reducing to 2.5 billion is rather extreme. Therefore, it is not likely for it to be a long term project and thus making the content of the story unlikely, the institution and legislation appears to be for more of a long term project. It's also extremely unfair to just one generation if culling is only done to them and only lasted for their generation. Furthermore, if we consider our current demographics, 5% of the population is more than 10th, 11th and 12th graders combined. That means even if every single student is culled, the project will grind to a halt after a mere 5 years--there will be no more students, this is taking into consideration of new enrollment and no graduates-- that is all student are culled, specifically, the sum of 1 to 18 years old(existing and future student) is not enough for 25% of the population. Similarly, "no birth" is not enough to achieve the rate of decline required, as children born within a year does not constitute 5% of the population Realistically speaking, 0.5 to 1% will be a more suitable number, this will allow roughly half of all student to graduate. Also, this would mean that it will be a long term project, thus not drastically unfair to just one or two generation.

Frankly speaking, this number problem is what prompted me to write this review. How does such a elem... OK, freshman high school level matter get missed in a movie about education, even if the education is merely a setting?

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11 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

the film is truly amazing cos it is awful

1/10
Author: madeanaccoutjusttalktrash
4 November 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The cheap production value, bad dialogue, cliché plot, and douchey actors made for a quite painful experience. It really is great on exploring the awkwardness of coming to age. Most of the high schoolers you just want to punch in the face and fail the test, including, spoiler alert, the leading male role. The plot is so bad, it isn't post-apocalyptic it's more so akin with Purge. Horrible monologues and character development; cheap production, the background actors and the masked hall monitors actors were bad. Most of the scenes with filler actors were just moving their arms and whatnot. Towards the end were the masked dudes were outside the school were standing still, it quickly becomes clear that it is only two actor that they copied and pasted 3 times. If you just watch it with no explanation for it other than its a poor movie just backed by Google and the youtube brand, then maybe you can appreciate it as a comedy but not as a thriller. 3/10 for ironic comedy, 1/10 as is.

Update, ironically I gave the movie a 7/10 review on twitter and @TheThinning followed and favorited. I wasn't sure if they knew how bad it was or they all have Aspergers and can't tell what is sarcasm. Like to think they know it's a bad movie, but like I said the paid reviews is to protect the google/youtube brand. Not a bad thing because it's google; but still paid ratings is what is killing every industry.

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12 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Good

9/10
Author: Robert Keller
18 November 2016

Setting itself up for a sequel aside I think this was a good. It's short run time helped it not to bore. I think it was still long enough to get it's themes across. Character motivation was very clear and I did appreciate that. Don't look at this movie like the purge despite it being a little similar. It understands it's not a blockbuster life changing movie I mean it's on Youtube Red (I got a one month membership just to watch this) It's ending could have been better but appreciated it nonetheless. I liked the contrast of the Disney channel stars and the subject of the movie. They did well out of their element. Overall I would recommend this as a movie watch.

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Completely overrated

4/10
Author: claxton-80813 from United States
30 October 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is basically "The Purge", but without the horror or any fright. They took the same concept and tried to make it into a PG-13 thriller. There was one good twist, but that was it. The acting was pretty poor. The villain guard was not convincing and I hope to never watch Logan Paul in another movie that is attempting to be taken seriously.

I won't deny that there was potential for this film, but as it stands, the fact that the ratings for this are so high is dumbfounding and shows how low our standards have become. It felt like a college movie project and I have to assume that 16 year olds are the audience and intended audience.

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10 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Flawed plot, bad acting and loose ends.

2/10
Author: jayadore from Australia
16 December 2016

How? How can a plot have that many holes in it?! Not only that, but the amount of dead weight within the plot that either lead to nothing in particular or provided no depth to the overall arch of the story line and just flopped. The acting was cringe worthy at best and although it's an interesting idea, the whole YouTube starts a production company thing, if you're going to do it YouTube, please, do it right. Giving YouTube or in this case Vine stars a platform to fulfill their 5 second dream of being an actor might initially bring viewers but I can guarantee it'll be short lived. Nothing and I do mean nothing that I've watched off Red seems to have a hint of intelligent thought in it, and this was no exception.

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13 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

Wasn't bad!!

6/10
Author: monkeyXmonkey .
13 October 2016

The movie called "The Thinning" is held in the future where pretty much in layman terms, if you're dumb, you die. The government gives yearly annual tests to kids from kindergarten to 12th grade that determines and predicates the propensity of a students intellect, and if you fail that test, you're taken to the thinning where subsequently, you die.

So, I went in watching this movie on Youtube Red with no expectations. What I got was a pretty enjoyable dystopian movie, that had an okay plot, surprisingly good acting, some awkward direction, but overall wasn't too bad! One thing I was mostly surprised about was one of the main leads of the movie, Logan Paul! I follow his vlogs on YouTube, and he was the only reason I decided to watch this movie (so sorry if I'm totally bias about this movie), because I was really curious on what his acting chops were like, and he really surprised me!! His variety of emotions were fluid, and didn't feel stiff at all. He was the best character in the movie in my opinion. But other then him, I have to say he was the only reason I give this movie a 6/10. The direction, plot, and writing was simplistic which made the movie too predictable and stale. It wasn't anything special, and it had no surprises or twists.

But overall, I think anyone can enjoy this movie for what it is. It's nothing special. You'll probably enjoy it a lot more if you actually know the actors from YouTube!

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7 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

...and then a twist happens. Sigh.

5/10
Author: cgb_spender
26 October 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

First of all, I'll say that I've definitely seen worse. This is not a full-blown silver screen flick, but at the same time it's better than most of the old SciFi Channel movie-of-the-week productions. The acting is decent and the story /mostly/ flows (more on that below). I'd file this as the equivalent of a decent TV movie or a theater-released B-movie. Casting a Rick Perry look-alike as the no-party-named Governor of Texas was a cute move (and the irony of the Governor of Texas bragging about first-in-the-nation schools was also amusing).

I could go on a rant about some of the overdone tropes in the movie (faceless mooks, corrupt government, incompetent security planning, lousy math, apparently-overly-elaborate procedures, etc.) but (1) those points have mostly been hit on in other reviews and (2) I can allow for a certain amount of that in a movie like this. It was easy enough to connect the dots on why a lot of what was going on was going on.

However, (SPOILER ALERT) what killed it for me (pardon the phrasing) was the end-of-film twist. Basically, the plot until the end is best summed up as this: In response to his girlfriend failing the test last year and getting executed, Governor's son attempts suicide-by-test-failure (while leaving a videotaped message saying he's doing this). Governor predictably attempts to intervene and manage a score swap on his son's behalf, while his son Blake rebels against this. So far, not a horrid boilerplate plot. It turns out that the swapping was basically at random (since the guy overseeing the swap only has about 2-3 minutes to carry out the swap while the scores "process") and thus a few of the highest-scoring kids in the class (Laina, the other protagonist, included) had been designated as failing. Blake and Laina break free and try to escape and/or prove what's going on. They manage to trigger a leak, prompting the Governor to override the previous list swaps (including the one saving Blake), resulting in the "correct" students getting lethal injections while the ones who actually passed were released.

Had they ended with that, perhaps with the executed students bodies being loaded into a truck for disposal or something like that, the movie would have felt like it made sense. A measure of plot-dictated incompetence aside, everyone until then had behaved in a manner I can categorize as either "rational" (the Governor trying to save Blake but folding when the situation became impossible after the leak) or "rationally irrational" (Blake's decision to intentionally fail the test). It passed Hanlon's Razor...

...and then a twist occurs! Presumably in the interest of a sequel with most of the same actors, some idiot decided that revealing to the audience that "No, they weren't really executed, they were sent to work for Foxconn...and there's Blake's not-actually-dead love interest from the first act!" was a GREAT way to end the film. Frankly, a bit of telegraphing aside, the ending is ham-fisted enough that it feels like it was slapped on at the insistence of an executive who wanted the possibility of a franchise.

That twist frankly cost this movie somewhere in the range of 1.5-2.0 stars because of the mixture of how unnecessary it was and how absurd it felt. It in no way added anything to the movie, and if anything it undermined it: Minor, often background-related, issues aside it transformed what would otherwise have been a modestly tragic ending into a farce. Without it, Blake's escapade succeeds in one respect (outing corruption in the system and saving those about to be improperly executed) but the point of his 'triumphant stand against the system' is utterly lost on the world as a whole, he's dead, and the system endures. An ending like that feels like a "well-balanced" dystopian ending with a side of biting satire, and but for the removal of that twist (and perhaps a minute of re-cutting elsewhere) we'd have that.

With all of that said, the writers do deserve a pat on the back: The movie otherwise works, but that unneeded wrinkle at the end did a number on it.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Anti government, Big Corp propaganda movie hides that THE THINNING is already happening in real life: the poor.

1/10
Author: gooogleable from Amsterdam, the Netherlands
11 January 2017

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Thinning tries to sell us the idea that their plot (culling the herd for the good of all) is something totally new and bizarre, but this already happens RIL (In Real Life) in America: the cut-off line isn't academic achievement (because then, all the red states would be depopulated) but money (mostly) and race (a lot): If you're poor and/or a minority, you die. By denying the poor and minorities the access to education, jobs, bank loans, health care and forcing them to live in lead-ridden housing, near industrial zones full of toxic waste, the middle class is deliberately setting up the poor to die sooner. Of course, this is never reported in the news, since the only news about the poor is how they kill each other, which also by design and very deliberate design at that.

Also, "The Thinning" is a thinly veiled fascism promotion vehicle: it doesn't actually say that killing kids, aged 6 (SIX!) thru 18 is bad and unjust, it says that killing the SMART kids is bad. The glorification of killing kids, provided they score low ONE TIME on a single test, is never really challenged by anyone.

This, is fascism.... almost at it purest. Of course there's lots of whining among the comments how this is some Evil Government film, but since America is STILL a democracy, it's more an Evil American(s) Electing An Evil Government thing. In the movie, Americans are the only ones on the planet, who kill kids to reduce global warming. The hidden message is obvious: Everyone who battles global must be a kid killer. This is of course, a fallacy.

Restricting the numbers of kids being born, which doesn't involve killing anyone or anything (no, a blob of cells isn't a human being, certainly not a six or 18 year old), apparently is rejected as a way of doing this. And there are of course some commenters who think executing kids is a good thing to do, something Hitler almost got right, they say, but they complain he killed the WRONG people.

The weakest point of the story is that it doesn't actually explain WHY killing people solves global warming as opposed to eating less meat, switching to green energy and limiting consumerism. Reducing the CO2 footprint by 5% can simply be achieved by limiting electricity delivery to houses and companies. Forcing everyone to get solar panels and wind turbines would be FAR MORE effective, save trillions in cash and wouldn't involve the KILLING of KIDS. To some this is a minor detail, because they're so dumb that they think they won't ever be culled as the 5% dumbest. That's actually funny.

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