Where I Watched It: HBO MAX
English Audio Description Provided By: The Media Access Group
Narrated By: Christopher Flowers
They can’t all be winners. I’ve been trying to go back through and review some horror titles with audio description that i hadn’t seen, and I know that this might be a shocker, but I didn’t prioritize a horror movie centered around a board game you can buy at Wal Mart as a must see. Yet, i always try to be open minded when walking in to any film, and I have to be honest and at least acknowledge that I’ve seen worse.
Sure, the film is silly. Almost aggressively so. It features these rules that they always have to follow, one of which is to say goodbye. To what? Never play alone. Wouldn’t that really tell you if a ghost was there? The film shows us these sisters, jumps forward to one of them in crisis, and before you know it, she’s dead. I know, spoiler, right? Well, considering the entire movie’s actual plot revolves around her death and her sister coming in to try and figure out what happened, I’d say it’s not a spoiler so much as what the film is about.
Soon, a group of young people find themselves haunted by something. Something that loves to sew mouths shut, and write Hi Friend. And the only way to communicate is to use a board game. I wonder if they can just go buy another board, if that would still work.
The film requires you to believe that a Ouija board has real significance, even though the prequel to this film (which I watched after), explains in much better detail as to why this board game is killing them. Both films are really a companion piece, as it’s a before and after type situation, just released in reverse order.
But this first film, aside from a few cheap jump scares, really wasn’t all that interesting. Yes, the plot tries to surprise you as it evolves, but its PG-13 rating ultimately holds it back from being willing to “go there” at any given moment. The audio description does a good job of tracking the ghostly happenings, and might make you a little spooked out this time of year.
There are terrible horror films that lack purpose, imagination, relevance, or a plot, and some that are just populated with awful actors. This is not that. Olivia Cooke stars in this, and the film manages to be just interesting enough to be only slightly bad. Not run for the hills bad, just maybe not pick this film unless you are bored silly.
Remember, it’s a board game. They made a horror film about a board game.
Final Grade: C-