Unfriended (2015)

 We live in a world where technology pretty is now a part of our daily lives. Case in point, having the ability to communicate through our computers. But what happens when having a conversation with friends on the computer starts to get ugly? By this, a question is asked: can the dead hack into our computers and reveal terrible secrets about our friends? That is the premise of the horror film “Unfriended”, a movie that uses its subject material to its advantage in shocking ways. While film itself is suspenseful and mysterious, there are some problems that cannot be ignored. “Unfriended” is a social commentary about what happens when a prank goes to far on the Internet, and consequences are severe.

The plot involves a group of friends having a conversation via Skype. Unbeknownst to them, the spirit of their dead friend has come to join in the chat as well. What follows is what follows is everyone trying corroborate just what is going on. All the while, their friend is forcing them to tell the truth about one year ago when a girl named Laura Barnes committed suicide. Everyone tries to mitigate, but no one is safe online.

“Unfriended” is a horror film that uses the marketing for this movie to its advantage. The story keeps the audience glued to the mystery at hand, as well as having our main characters reveal terrifying truths about each other. The setting is near-perfect. The idea that teens communicating through Skype, just builds up the danger and suspense even greater. This leads to the death kills, which, to be fair, are blurry images, but by doing this, it makes the fear all the more relatable. In fact, the whole movie feels like a low-budget horror flick; minimal cast, but heavy on the scares. “Unfriended” proves that it doesn’t need a big budget to produce what is being advertised.

But that doesn’t mean that the film has flaws. For one thing, the acting is a little bit on the hokey side, but it’s not terrible by all means. The whole thing is being told through a person’s computer screen, and while it is effective, it could have been nice if there were cameras on the set to make the horror a little bit more convincing. After all, this is a modern day ghost story, so there could have been something to be a little bit more audacious in the execution Finally, the movie doesn’t get really interesting until the third act. And while the run time of an hour and 20 minutes is good for this type of movie, it gets good rather late.

In conclusion, “Unfriended” is laudable in that it brings the horror genre something different, but at the same time, could have been easily improved. Just whatever you do, be careful when you go online. You never know who might be watching you.

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