Significant Other

Where I Watched It: Paramount Plus

English Audio Description Available?: Yes

I know you are going to expect an elaborate review here, and I’m not giving it. The thing is, as a film critic, I try to watch a wide range of things, and often nowadays, i don’t even know what it is I’m watching. I just know it’s the new release being pushed by a streaming service, and I’m trying to have thoughtful discussions about the usefulness of audio description, and remind my community how many choices are out there, and remind Hollywood that even though we are blind, we are still watching.

i knew nothing about this film going in. My only qualm is that it has a rather unnecessary opening 30 seconds that reveal something they needn’t to have revealed. The part you are allowed to know is that the film features a couple (Jake Lacy/Mika Monroe) who are about to go on a romantic camping trip somewhere, and the genre for this film is horror. You’ll pick up on that last part from the tension the film is always building, as well as how it intensifies and makes it more visible as the movie progresses.

What I loved about this film was that it subverted what I thought would be some cheap crappy thriller about a couple surviving *something* in the wilderness. This film has almost no extraneous cast, and Monroe and lacy do all the heavy lifting. It’s serious at times, dealing with personal issues of the characters, as well as pushing the tension of making you wonder what just exactly lies out there in the darkness. And just when the film starts to reveal itself as one thing, it unexpectedly changes direction, and then swings back around and shifts again and almost becomes a comedy for a while. It plays with it’s audience like a predator plays with its food. There’s little concern for your expectations, but rather this film is in control, and the only way you can do anything is to just accept it as it comes.

There is violence and gore in this film, but I would call it repetitive gore. What I mean by that (again, without spoilers), is something like Scanners, where the film is pretty centered on the gore being exploding heads. You don’t ahve to worry about much else, you just have to get used to one specific type of gore.

And, if you look for trigger warnings, there would be nothing here for me to warn you of. Despite the title, and the possibility, this is not a sexual film.

The narration, which Paramount Plus doesn’t ever let me get to the end of the credits, was good and it described the few gory elements in detail, which it should for a horror film. It’s not perfect, and there are scenes where (because this film is constantly shooting for a jump scare), it evades identifying a character entering the scene, even after the character has. Technically, this film is primarily two characters, so if you hear someone else speak, it must be the other person in the couple (for most of the film), so this isn’t that big of a deal, but I did notice it. And there’s really no excuse, as there are a lot of silent moments here where you could push the audio description further.

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by this, and I hope by me continuing to not spoil this for you, that you will be too. Take a chance if you’re looking for something totally different that takes risks this Halloween season.

Final Grade: A-

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