Friday, 7 November 2014

50-SECOND FILM REVIEW: Spooky Ouija banks on formula and few genuine frights

FRIGHT NIGHT: The clique of friends try to reconnect with a departed member.

Teen horror flicks are a tricky lot. They're usually very well-made or atrociously formulaic. This month's Ouija falls somewhere in the middle. It's moderately suspenseful, full of superstition and, unsurprisingly, trades on the supernatural/paranormal. But where the McG-directed movie falls short of the requisite thrills and chills, it compensates with believable performances from an attractive cast of acting talent straight from the Hollywood pool. When her best friend Debbie (Shelley Hennig) winds up dead (suicide by hanging), Laine (Olivia Cooke) suspects there's more to the story, given especially the odd behaviour Debbie had been exhibiting of late. But the inconvenient truth comes sharply into focus when the spiritual board game, ouija, which they played as children strangely re-enters their lives — with fatal consequences. Desperate to reconnect with the dead girl to get some answers, Laine invites their closest friends to forge a connection with the other side via the ouija board. Given the premise, you know things will turn out badly and, sure enough, they do, as members of the clique start kicking the bucket in rapid succession, in some of the most freakish of circumstances that offer eerie echoes of the Final Destination movies. As the timeless adage admonishes, curiosity kills and curiosity cures. Tyrone's Verdict: C+

Still Playing on the Palace Cinemas Circuit:
> JOHN WICK: Keanu Reeves gets the last word in this bombastic action thriller that finds the Hollywood vet in tip-top shape that recalls his Matrix era. [B]

>> DESTINY: Newcomer Karian Sang, Chris Martin and Munair Zacca headline this heartfelt and strongly acted Jamaican feature about a young lady (Sang) who rediscovers what it means to have roots. [B+

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