Review: ‘Unfriended’ better than most found-footage films, but full of cliches

Posted: January 14, 2016 in Opinion, Reviews

By Michael Penge
Cougar News Blog

     Unfriended is a movie that expands on the found footage genre and does a decently good job of it, but finds the problems most horror movies seem to have.
     The movie stars Shelley Hennig, a former Miss Teen USA winner, and Renee Olstead, a TV star and a singer. The movie operates on a $1 million budget and made $64 million, which is crazy when you consider the movie’s budget.
Unfriended already begins on a creepy tone. It revolves a high school student named Laura Barns that was being recorded while she committed suicide. Her suicide video is then posted to Liveleak. The movie then cuts to 6 friends in a Skype call when a user named billie227 joins their call uninvited.
     Anyone who is a fan of found footage films like Paranormal Activity will definitely like this movie. As I said before, Unfriended expands on the found footage genre by taking on a more modern appearance to the old way of just a character just holding a camera for some reason everywhere they go. Now in Unfriended it’s seems more natural because it’s just a group of friends talking to each other not a man carrying a camera no matter what.
     One of the few problems with the film though is the characters. They practically just make you hate them. They’re all self-absorbed teens and you’ll probably be sympathising with the murderer. But, I guess that’s what the movie is trying to portray. That cyberbullying actually has effects on people and is a serious issue. One of the other problems with the film is the lack of setting. Most of the time spent watching the movie is spent looking at the same computer screen of the same girl, Blair, while she talks to her friends and their guest interacts with the six of the people in the video chat. It’s just not very interesting to have the main character just be opening up different windows and programs and then watch her type something then delete, then type again.
     Overall, the film presents a new take on the found footage genre, but is rife with cliches and problems most movies have of being unintentionally funny when it really shouldn’t be. It earns itself a score of 3.5 out of 5.


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