There is a key social awareness behind the on screen images that gives the film a very fresh, and particularly provocative, outlook
Modern day technology is an increasingly unnerving topic to discuss, let alone make the central fear in a feature length film. Unfriended: Dark Web takes that terror to another level as it sets a precedent of how ordinary daily actions can be as detrimental as huge, seemingly life-changing ones.
Matias’ (Colin Woodell) new laptop is brilliant. His friends notice such an improvement in both sound quality and and video when he logs in to Skype for games night. However, being second hand, there’s a few issues with Matias’ latest purchase, and as he delves deeper into the past of his new piece of technology, a dark secret begins to make itself very clear.
Inherently, the film isn’t traditionally frightening, with few jump scares and only minor actual horror scenes; But Unfriended: Dark Web uses the power of suggestion and fear of the unknown very intricately, cementing its prowess as a film that fully understands the public’s apprehension with technology, despite the majority of these doing very little to stop it affecting their daily lives. There is a key social awareness behind the on screen images that gives the film a very fresh, and particularly provocative, outlook on how we command ourselves online.
The set of characters we are presented with are particularly well thought out and that goes a long way to giving even the stranger moments a keen sense of reality. By remaining grounded and utilising a strong set of rules, the plot is able to drip through progressively and become an engaging and inviting horror.
For what Unfriended: Dark Web lacks in scares, it more than makes up for in psychological fear factor. Using its new and still relatively untested ‘computer screen only’ style of film making, it becomes a very pertinent and relevant film for more than just a horror audience. There’s an expansive and undeniable future ahead, but Unfriended: Dark Web is a very good marker for what is to come from a fresh but niche new genre.
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