In “Truth or Dare” horror actress and now first-time director Jessica Cameron had little to work with in her directorial debut. However, she was able to craft a fun and quickly paced film that leaves the viewer glued to the screen. Not to say that it’s a bad movie, it worked in its simplicity, but there wasn’t much character development in the film and it seemed to have two acts, rather than the traditional three. If you’re looking for violence than we suggest you see this film.
The film starts out with the Truth or Daredevils: Jennifer Collins (Cameron), Michelle Lucas (Heather Dorff), Ray Austin (Shelby Stehlin), Courtney Austin (Devanny Pinn), Brandon Van Vliett (Tony Lockhart) and Jesse Wilson (John Moore) out in the desert filming their next YouTube viral hit. Next they’re seen in a studio filming a talk show where an obsessed fan gets kicked out for his obsessive behavior. The location then takes us to John’s newly bought house out in the boondocks where the crew is staying to film another video.
The house is where the rest of and the majority of the film takes place. The video they’re filming involves a game of Russian roulette and it’s John’s turn to play the part. Of course he’s told off-camera that the bullet is a blank, only containing gun powder. He pulls the trigger and the next thing we see is his dead and bloody body lying on the floor. While everyone is going crazy and blaming each other we see the obsessed fan from the talk show, Ryan Kiser (Derik B Smith) holding a gun.
Smith steals the movie with his subtle and creepy performance that could have easily been played over-the-top. Instead he chose to play it down, which worked to a disturbing perfection. The rest of the movie we see that he has the remaining crew tied up and they must play Truth or Dare with him in command.
What we see is how dangerous obsession can be and how far someone will go to make the most realistic reality show. Each scene, whether the Daredevils chooses Truth or Dare becomes more violent and disturbing than the one before it. Through the Truth we see that each participant has a dark past to hide, such as having sex with an underage child or with a sibling. The Dares include cutting off nipples and masturbating your sister with a oversize bottle.
The commentary on the film is that we all know these days that reality shows are scripted, aren’t they? The viewer wants what they’re watching to be pushed to the extreme. Every reality show is trying to one-up the other and we have to ask, how far are they willing to go? The film also deals with the fact that no matter how extreme it is, everyone hides a dark secret just waiting to be exposed.
The acting in the film overall is decent. Derik B Smith stands out with his psychotic behavior and Devanny Pinn and Jessica Cameron do a good job as well. Cameron as the bad-ass chick who will fight to the last minute and Pinn as the naive, yet protective sister. Don’t get us wrong though, we enjoyed the film and it ran much quicker than its 89-minute run time, which too us is always a sign of an entertaining movie. We would recommend you see it if you enjoy disturbing images and elements or if you want a good horror film that moves quickly and won’t leave you bored.