Directed by Justin Dec
Starring: Elizabeth Lail, Jordan Calloway, Talitha Bateman, Tichina Arnold, P.J. Byrne
Runtime: 90 minutes
Rating PG-13 (for terror, violence, bloody images, suggestive material, language and thematic elements)
As I’ve said recently, Halloween was approaching. It’s here. HAPPY HALLOWEEN! This week we went and watched Countdown another film in the horror genre. A lot of times during the fall months production companies will churn out countless films in this genre just to appease the fan base and to appeal to everyone’s appetite for the ghoulish and spooky this time of year. I was worried that’s what we would have for this film. I knew the premise. An app that kills. I’d imagine most of my readers have a smart phone littered with apps. Today most of us our glued to our phones. Trust me, when I have company over and turn my phone off I usually see a jaw hit the floor (Sorry Tim and Brian) This means the premise works for the majority. I have a few apps on my phone, thankfully not the one that this film shows us. I went in late earlier in the week. The weather was a perfect fall temperature. The wolfman scared me as I walked into the cinema. The mood was set.
Onto the film.
We open with a party. Typical college-aged party. Our first partygoer yells out, “Should I text her?” (Been there my ill-fated friend) Around the table talk of this new app comes out. It’s called Countdown and tells you the exact moment you die. Everyone thinks it’s a joke and downloads it. Most get years “left” on their clock ranging from 50 to 60 years from now. One doesn’t. Her name is Courtney and she has 3 hours to live. We see paranoia set in and she avoids getting in the car to ride home to play it safe. She makes it to her home….and something picks her up and kills her. Something out of thin air? No-one is safe.
We then meet this film’s heroine. Quinn (Lail) she is a recently promoted nurse and hears about the app as well. From Courtney’s boyfriend. He is next. She doesn’t believe him and downloads the app. Guess what? He dies. As she downloads the app, she sees she has roughly 3 days left. The clock is ticking.
From this point, the movie is pretty good. Jump scares galore. If that’s your thing. You’ll enjoy this. I may or may not have jumped a few times. Quinn heads to a phone store to get a whole new phone, new number, and new sim card. She meets Matt (Calloway) and they team up. He doesn’t have much time left either.
From this point on the film is hit or miss. The “scare” scenes work. Creepy “monsters” check. Weird music check. Cheesy dialogue…also check. At times the actors said lines that seemed like they’ve came out of every horror movie ever made. I was ready to give this 1 and ½ stars. There is a saving grace though. They meet Father John (Byrne) and he’s actually funny. Not your typical priest and he WANTS demons to be real. Originally, he thinks they are there with his grub hub, but they need answers. From there it’s a race against time to see if they will survive the clock.
The pacing of this film works, it clocks in at an hour and half. A perfect time killer to close out Halloween. The scares are there too. The dialogue needs some work. I felt that the cast was saying the same thing or complaining about the same things every other scene. We get it. You have 3 hours left…. let’s go! Even though the dialogue at times was laughable the cast worked. We see Quinn and her sister Jordan (Bateman) and their relationship was believable. Matt and Quinn have chemistry…of course they do and that works too. I’ll also be honest, there were a few twists I didn’t expect. (Nice Work) Give this film a shot, you’ve probably already seen Joker by now. It’s not perfect, but I had fun. Next week I promise no horror movies…. for a while! 3 stars out of 5 #SHOPLOCAL
Andrew McManus is Operations Manager for Patties & Pints and its parent company Eflow Development.He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 740-981-9158