Monday, November 10, 2014

"Ouija" Review - Written by Tim Hellman

'OUIJA': Two Stars (Out of Five)

Hasbro's first horror flick is this supernatural thriller based on their popular board game; which has been used as a 'spirit board', since the late 1800s, by people mockingly, or seriously, trying to communicate with the dead. The film tells the story of a group of friends that investigate the shocking death of another friend, after she was recorded using an ancient Oija board. The movie was written and directed by first time feature film director Stiles White and written by White and Juliet Snowden (the duo also co-wrote the 2012 supernatural horror flick 'THE POSSESSION'). It stars Olivia Cooke, Shelley Hennig, Daren Kagasoff, Douglas Smith, Ana Coto, Bianca A. Santos and Lin Shaye. I found the movie to be pretty boring and really, somewhat painfully, dry.

Laine (Cooke) and Debbie (Hennig) had been friends since they were little girls; they also experimented with a Oija board, playfully, when they were young. When Debbie is found dead at her house, presumably having hung herself, Laine, and four other friends, investigate what happened to her. They find a video recording of Debbie playing with a really old Oija board and also find the 'spirit board' itself. They then try to use the board to summon the dead, themselves, and find out what happened to Debbie. This of course turns out to be a grave mistake.

The movie does have some creepy imagery, and a few good scares, but other than that it's just a complete waste of time. It's so dull it sometimes makes it's 89 minute running time seem like it's hours longer (at least). The acting and directing are really amateurish and the script could have used about a dozen more rewrites. I like and respect horror movies, even the bad ones, but this one isn't even bad in a fun way; it's just boring. Which is one of the worst crimes, I think, a film can commit.

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