I thought it was entertaining, most of black mirror feels forced, this one feels fine,the pacing is one of the greatest in all of black mirror.
It is as big of a dissappointment as it's main character, it would of been better if the writers had read the book "Save the Cat" or if the director was Milo's Forman's who's Amadeus is a great example on how to make a terrible person into a great character, in this case it simply doesn't work to anyone who doesn't feel guilty for leaving his wife and kid for 10 years and coming back demanding respect that is actually given to them pretty fast and applauded.
The photography is decent but not anything special, production design is pretty clean and it seems like they had a big budget for this one with all the extras in police costumes. The acting has it's ups and downs the one that shines is the villain that is only seen for a couple of scenes. All in all it is a very underwhelming film considering it comes from South Korea which tends to have close to flawless execution on it's widely distributed films.
This episode you can pretty much see a bunch of writers struggling with the amount of episodes they have to write for the season. The Lucifer vs Pierce thing with Chloe went for far too long now and this episode was the ultimate proof. I defended the show from many haters with that same opinion, but this episode allowed me to see things clearly, the show is losing ¨it¨. I was so aware I was watching a fictional story it wasn't even entertaining anymore with the on point dialogues and the lazy subplots that were not going anywhere special or intriguing. I expect the next episode to be sooo much better to keep me watching.
The concept was great but I expected 31 killers sent out at the same time so the fact that they go 1 by 1 and that they are only 6 was underwhelming, but then again, I think he saved it with style, the ending is a beauty, not as a huge beauty as The Devil Reject's Freebird, but, a pretty soft unpretentious, chill, great ending that made me feel the greatness of slashers and the beauty of the last character alive. Poetry.
As far as this particular episode goes, without spoilers, it is emotional and suspenseful, it also feels raw at the last monologue, it is a show that does not mind showing the bad side of their characters, making them so human that sometimes I forget is a sitcom.
The thing about Black Mirror is that reviewers have a tendency to project themselves when they hate or love an episode, I disliked many things about this one, but, the story was well told, it was also incredibly imaginative and they had enough things going to make it interesting, unlike other entries that have had lazy editing, this one was entertaining all the way even if you hate it for your own particular reasons.
The plot gives enough screen time and plot points to all the characters, even when it focuses on the Strucker family altho this time it is great and not just complaining and running. The beginning, middle and ending are pretty clear, it is a really fine and on point great storytelling. There is one epic moment in this episode and a great reveal of a bigger episode to come, it is also somewhat emotional and most of character decisions make sense.
I hope this is just the start of a string of well done scripts and not just a lucky one.
Great storytelling, could of been a feature.
Illogical reactions from the characters make you feel stupid just for keep watching it, but is a fast movie so you just hold it. There are no good or gory deaths at all maybe except one at the ¨climax¨ of the story, where they reveal way too soon and in the most anti-climatic killer reveal you will ever see that comes in the shape of an on point dialogue with terrible delivery.
Then after the surprise is over you are so confused about how a good concept was used in such a dumb way, so the only conclusion you can get to is that it is a dumb movie, cos it is. Also is obviously full of clichés in terms of character archetypes so don't expect the only cool character to outlive it.
There is not much wrong with the movie technically, it was an interesting attempt, but the ending made seem ¨House of the Devil¨ like a good movie, some of the characters make good decisions, but then they just throw it all away and kill the cutest one, not enough gore, not enough comedy, not enough suspense, not enough anything, good character development in a bad story which does makes sense but tries too hard and uses a very cheap resort for the ending to fit in.
The real failure of the film, it's the lack of star power, of a very handsome lead, Jamie Kennedy is fine but not enough for people to socially accept him as a lead, it has the wit that "21 Jump Street" has, minus Channing Tatum, there are some awkwardly fun scenes that never push it far enough to become gross, the movie knows the limits of what it's funny and what is gross, which is also another amazing thing the script had.
Other than that it doesn't takes itself too seriously, it seems like a movie in which the crew and actors could have fun, I would of really though this movie was done in the 90's which is another good point for the D.O.P. and perhaps a bad point for marketing.
All in all, it is one of the few solid comedies around the last decade, unfortunately the lack of star power, the out of date visuals, and the script being too smart for it's own good, it might be a movie to watch in 10 years, it came out too soon.