After her best friend Debbie (Shelley Henning) dies in a tragic accident, Laine Morris (Olivia Cooke) convinces her friends to help her use Debbie’s old Ouija board to try to contact her and find out what really happened. Of course, things quickly go awry, as the group ends up accidentally awakening some angry spirits and now must figure out how to put them to rest, or face dire consequences.
There really isn’t much about this movie that hasn’t been done before, nor does it do any of these things particularly well. The cast is bland, the writing is lame, the plot is murky, and the scares aren’t even that scary. The director can only employ the same jump-scare tactic so many times before you can start to predict exactly when it’s going to happen (and this is coming from somebody who usually scares pretty easily). Somehow, the story felt both random and illogical yet totally predictable at the same time. I know movies like this aren’t exactly supposed to reek of intelligence, but when there are scenes that literally do not make any sense at all, it seems like the filmmakers weren’t even trying. But what I think hurt the movie most of all, though, is its lack of self-awareness. It takes itself so seriously that even I found myself having a hard time holding back laughter when the stakes were supposed to be at their highest.
I wouldn’t call the film a complete waste of time--it was pretty amusing, even if it was for all the wrong reasons. If you’re on the lookout for a campy horror flick to watch with your friends this Halloween, I guess this fits the bill. But if you want something funny (in a clever, self-aware sort of way) with an actual plot, I’d recommend that you check out Scream on Netflix instead.
Grade: C -