Unfriended

Film, Horror
3 out of 5 stars
Unfriended

Time Out says

3 out of 5 stars

‘Unfriended’ takes place entirely on one teenager’s very busy laptop screen. That’s where we all live now, so why not? It’s a horror film, which is to say bad things will happen. But parents might find it scary from the first jittery moment, as Skype windows open, a blouse is unbuttoned and bad emo rock accompanies a modern-day cyberdate.

More friends crash the group chat, including one mystery-blue unnamed guest, and we soon learn that these kids are varying shades of awful: they’ve shamed a peer into suicide by posting a video of her at a party, soiled and passed out. But the ghost in the machine has other plans for them.

The cast do a solid job, acting like real high-schoolers and not a Hollywood version of them. But the fear comes from two different sources, one more sophisticated than the other. There’s the shouty hysteria of the supernatural pushed right up in your face, which frankly gets tired. And more insidiously, there’s the nightmare of software gone haywire: windows shed their corner ‘close’ buttons, while pop-up ads take on an eerie intelligence. At the very least, ‘Unfriended’ offers a new spin on that cathartic horror-audience response: ‘Just leave the house!’ Let’s scream it together: ‘Turn the damn thing off!’

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Details

Release details

Rated:
15
Release date:
Friday May 1 2015
Duration:
83 mins

Cast and crew

Director:
Levan Gabriadze
Screenwriter:
Nelson Greaves
Cast:
Matthew Bohrer
Courtney Halverson
Shelley Hennig
Heather Sossaman