Wednesday, 10 June 2015

No.218 : Would You Rather

Would You Rather at the IMDb

Would you rather read the rest of this review our have a sharp stick shoved in your eye?

First up that title needs a question mark or at the very least an ellipse.

Sharp stick starting to look somewhat tempting eh?

The high concept of this film is that a gruop of random strangers have to make choices which ultimately may bring them wealth at the expense of the other participants. I'm sure they want to provoke discussion along the lines of ‘What would you do?’ but to that the easy answer is ‘Watch another film’.

Our player in the game is Iris, played by an anonymous Brittany Snow, who looks after her sick brother. His case is hopeless without an expensive bone marrow transplant but rather than move him to Britain for free treatment she engages with the mysterious stranger who is in her doctor’s consulting room. He says his family foundation may offer assistance and invites her to his mansion that evening. She smells a rat but after a job falls through she decides to go along.

She is the last of the eight candidates to arrive and we get a brief summary of each before the enigmatic Shepard Lambrick begins his parlour game. Things start innocently enough with a vegetarian offered $10k for eating a steak but we know more sinister trials await, as the movie poster shows eyeball with a razor blade against it.

Each character is offered a moral conundrum of hurting themselves or another and soon the numbers start to dwindle. There is a weak sub-plot about the doctor getting an attack of conscience but he turns out as much use as a cock flavoured lollipop.

After a few gruesome trials we are down the last two - who will triumph and will the prize be worth having?

I quite liked this film and it was certainly thought provoking to some degree. I think the execution was somewhat weak however and I don’t think the people would have acted as rationally as was depicted. I think as soon as the first guy hit the floor everyone would go mental regardless of how many henchmen there where. Instead people carefully considered their options without thinking that the nutter in charge would most likely kill them all regardless.

There were a couple of recognisable faces including Darnell out of ‘My Name is Earl’ who for some reason still sported the same mad haircut - brand recognition I guess. You also get one off ‘The Walking Dead’ and the dad out of ‘Home Alone’ so you can appreciate this isn't exactly a mega budget affair.

The low budget also explains the lack of flair in the ‘games’ - essentially it’s pretty low key torture and self mutilation - and the action is confined to one room for the majority of the film.

It did however zip along and keep me engaged to the far fetched and unsatisfying ending. That is more that is more than most manage, however it did fail in its endeavour to be a talked about film or the next ‘Saw’ franchise - I've started to forget it already.

Best Bit : Snotty Son gets his.

‘W’ Score 13/23

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