This review contains spoilers.
We’ve all played truth or dare at sleepovers or parties or whatever, so why not make that into a horror movie, right? Where could you go wrong? While I definitely appreciate teen horror films that are reminiscent of the 1980s, Blumhouse’s Truth or Dare took the wrong route.
The film centers around Olivia (Lucy Hale, Pretty Little Liars) and her group of friends who are off to Mexico to enjoy their last college spring break. Olivia is reluctant to go, but eventually gives in and winds up meeting Carter who convinces Olivia and her friends to start playing truth or dare. Eventually, it becomes clear that the game has a life of its own and forces participation by killing those who don’t play. As ridiculous a concept as it is, it only gets worse as the film goes on.
It should be noted that this film is rated PG-13, and though that didn’t negatively effect Blumhouse’s last teen horror film, Happy Death Day, it hurts this film in a big way. Most death scenes cut before you see anything gruesome, and the awkward editing makes it very obvious that they are cutting away. Though PG-13 horror films can be well done, this one should definitely have been rated R.
The film slowly reveals lame rules like only two players in a row can choose “truth”, and then the third player must choose “dare”. This is included right in the middle of the movie seemingly just to answer the simple question: “why not just choose truth forever?” The dares escalate from “this will ruin your relationship with someone” to just plain stupid. At one point one of the interchangeable characters is forced to walk the edge of a roof until she’s done drinking a bottle of liquor. I literally laughed in the theater at how ridiculous this scene is. It’s also completely pointless as she survives falling off the roof only to die immediately in the next scene after being shot.
The characters discover that the game has been going on for a long time and the only way to stop it is by having someone cut out his tongue and place it inside a broken pot. Yes, you read that right. Not only that, but it doesn’t take much convincing to get him to do it. It was basically “Cut your tongue out”, “No, I can’t do that”, “Cut your tongue out”, “Okay.” At the end, they realize that the game will never stop and so they make a YouTube video which forces anyone who watches it to become a part of the game. Gee, thanks pointless characters.
This movie is bad, and not bad in a good way. It’s just bad. The characters are entirely interchangeable and more than a few are straight up unlikable. The concept is stupid and the film’s rating hurt it in a big way. Don’t waste your time and if you have to see a horror movie, go see A Quiet Place. It’s much better!