Whilst nobody can deny the recent success stories associated with Jason Blum’s cult boutique horror studio Blumhouse Productions, after all the studio was responsible for bringing to the masses admittedly one of the most critically acclaimed horror movies of all times in the shape of Jordan Peel’s multi-award winning Get Out, however the same can’t be said about the studio’s latest cliché-ridden “kill em all” horror offering Truth Or Dare.
Directed by Jeff Wadlow and staring Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars), Tyler Posey (Teen Wolf), Violett Beane (The Leftovers), the film takes a high concept idea and turns it into a clunky, kill-heavy production aimed at the Snapchat generation with, shall we say, mixed results.
Related: Win Merchandise form Truth or Dare
A group of college friends decide to have one last spring-break together in Mexico before the end of the school year. The trip soon turns into a nightmare when Olivia (Hale), who was initially dead-set against the idea of going away, is lured in by a shady character (played by Landon Liboiron) to play a creepy game of Truth or Dare in an abandoned convent, and consequently convinces the rest of the group to go along with her. Back at college, the game which it turns out has been possessed by an unknown evil power, starts killing the group of friends one by one unless they follow what it asks of them to the letter.
Borrowing ideas from the far superior It Follows as well as other horror classics such as the Final Destination films, Truth or Dare does its best to appeal to fans of those classics, but a heavy-handed approach at trying way too hard to be down with the Snapchat generation, only succeeds in coming across as desperate and out of touch.
Most of what is being offered here is the usual horror fodder which we’ve seen done before with far more class from far better production values. Director Jeff Wadlow manages to raise a few scares, but his inability to be more adventurous is what makes this film into an “also ran” rather than something which any of us would still remember in a few weeks time.
With a dialogue which, one can only imagine, was written by someone who has never met a millennial in real life, Truth or Dare could have benefited with being a little more self-deprecating and a little less stiff, but nobody can accuse its young cast of not trying their best, even if they were ultimately let down by a predictably boring screenplay.
On the whole, if it is mindless scares you’re after, then look no further, however audiences would do well not to go in expecting anything on the same level as Get Out, because they will be sorely disappointed.
Truth or Dare is in cinemas from Friday 13th of April.