Watch it if you dare… MUAHAHAHAHA!
Synopsis: A harmless game of “Truth or Dare” among friends turns deadly when someone—or something—begins to punish those who tell a lie—or refuse the dare. (Universal Pictures)
Starring: Lucy Hale, Tyler Posey, and Violett Beane
Writers: Michael Reisz, Jillian Jacobs, Chris Roach, and Jeff Wadlow
Director: Jeff Wadlow
Rating: 14A (Canada)/PG-13 (United States)
Running Time: 100mins
For showtimes and more, check out Blumhouse’s Truth or Dare on movietimes.com.
Basically, whether or not you’ll enjoy the film depends on if you can get behind the premise. Unlike a similar film with a silly and fun premise, Happy Death Day, this one had a silly premise but wasn’t nearly as fun. The premise was pretty simple and shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since it’s in the title after all. Olivia (Hale), Lucas (Posey), Markie (Beane), Penelope (Sophia Ali), Tyson (Nolan Gerard Funk), and Brad (Hayden Szeto) were a group of friends who must try to survive a potentially deadly game of truth or dare and there wasn’t much else.
There was more going on with each of the characters but it was just hard to care about any of them. They weren’t the best people anyway which made it satisfying to watch them bite the dust. Nothing here will come as much of a surprise as the story is utterly predictable and cliche ridden. What was supposed to reveal the characters’ true nature didn’t work as the writers intended since the characters were such terrible people with little to no redeeming qualities and insufferable to watch, however, it isn’t necessarily their fault.
What could have been “so bad it’s good” territory was simply bad and lacking any self-awareness. When you thought the premise was silly, wait until the story’s even sillier explanation for what was happening that came way too late into the film. In most bad horror films, the plot is driven by stupid decisions and logic gaps and this film was no different. Characters were all over the place and difficult to keep up with because of inconsistent writing. Now all of this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise with four credited writers.
In terms of a horror film, it isn’t particularly scary because of how lame and predictable it was. There were a few unoriginal jump scares but the film lacked any sense of danger, tension, or suspense. Anyone who has seen any of the trailers has seen the weird-faced people. What was meant to be scary was just off-putting. Not much happened besides these as the film was edited in a way that left the film feeling way too sanitized (like it was meant to have a different rating), leaving it with no impact whatsoever and was mostly annoying to watch.
Following suit with the atrocious writing and mediocre direction, the acting was mediocre and unintentionally funny at times as well. These actors were supposed to be playing friends but lacked enough chemistry to make their relationship believable. It felt like none of them wanted to be there. Out of all the performances, Hale’s as Olivia as the cliche lead was perhaps the best. With all the stupid throughout, why would the end be any different?
Overall, this was a bad (and not so bad that’s it good) horror film that was unable to overcome its silly premise and suffered from terrible execution in every aspect from the writing, directing, editing, and acting that simply did not work the way that was probably intended.