NetGuide NZ - Film review: Unfriended

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Film review: Unfriended

When I saw the trailer for this movie I was heavily intrigued. I’m not a teenager but this teen-horror mixed with the paranormal delivered via social media grabbed my attention also immediately, and I wasn’t disappointed. 

Unfriended tells the story of a bunch of young friends being harassed by an unknown perpetrator via Skype, Facebook and instant messaging as they group-chat online.

The point of difference? The entire film is told via one character’s computer screen, in real time.

What it reminded me of? The Blair Witch Project. But with video chat instead of a video camera.

As the story unfolds, it seems the five friends were involved in the release of a shaming YouTube video that lead to one of their friends killing herself a year earlier. 

Blaire (Shelley Hennig), who’s computer is the audience’s gateway, starts receiving messages claiming to be Laura Barnes (Heather Sossaman), the star of the video and the girl who committed suicide. Over the next hour or so, the friends, and at the same time the audience, learns the secrets and lies of the friends involved in the video chat, and it seems no one is innocent. 

As Blaire tries to uncover the identity of their group’s sees-everything-knows-everything stalker, it seems some paranormal activity is at play here. 

However, by using Facebook, YouTube and Skype, the film creates a believable universe that audience cannot help but relate to. 

While the script might not be the most original, the performances of the young cast are good enough to believe they’re just playing themselves as they chat to their friends online.

What I liked the most about the film was how it portrayed today’s problems in today’s ways; cyber bullying in all its forms, with the harshest of consequences. 

BUT. It wasn’t that scary. So points off. 

3.5/5

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