Young millennials often forget that they(We?) are a generation crafted in a world that is always connected to the point that we were practically raised by the internet. The film Nerve uses this to create a story geared towards what it perceives as its social-media crazed target audience.
Nerve is an underground online game played by millions of teens which for some reason many adults do not know, but are simply just confused when they see teens doing stupid tasks(Sort of like Pokemon Go). In the game, there are watchers and players. Watchers pay to watch and vote for people to do crazy dares which can range from kissing a stranger to hanging from a skyscraper and anything in between while players accept these tasks for money.
The story centers around the typical, awkward and nerdy teenager, Venus (often called Vee). According to her best friend, Vee lives a boring life. Looking to spruce up her life and make some extra cash, Vee reluctantly signs up to be a player. After her first dare, she is instantly paired up by “The Watchers” with Ian, a boy who’s the polar opposite of her, who is also playing the game. The two choose to run through a couple of dares together in the city but Vee soon starts to realize that shes not in as much control as she originally thought. .
Personally I like thrillers/horrors where some sort of game is involved, so this movie was easily enjoyable for me. Some may see it as a cheesy teen-movie, which it still has some sort of intellect, truth and reliability around it. The performances from the actors are nothing phenomenal, Emma Roberts and Dave Franco do the best they can with the cheesy script they are given. Random hacker jargon is thrown around aimlessly and makes no sense, but I guess for the average viewer it works. Orange is the New Black fans will be happy to see a few familiar faces in the cast though. Cinematography wise, the film is bright and vibrant and fits its theme perfectly.
The film plays on our knowledge of the darkest part of the internet – Comment sections, Worldstar and 4Chan. With these things in mind, the film overtly portrays the harshness of the internet and the folks on it. While the story falls a little flat my biggest complaint, like most movies is that if you watch the trailer for this movie, you’ve already seen a lot of it. I counted about three dares that weren’t actually in the trailer, just three. While there is a predictable plot twist here and there, I do wish the studio did a better job at keeping the movies main story points under wraps and away from the trailer. A fitting soundtrack and a fast pace help keep this short story going, but there never really feels like there is enough substance. What the film does do well is keep the thrill going. While not an academy award winner, the movie is entertaining and worth a watch if you have nothing better to do.
Below is the usual Pros and Cons list for the movie
- Interesting Premise
- Solid Soundtrack
- Social media aspects done well
- Both Soso and Poussey from OITNB show up
- Flat Story
- A lot given away in the trailer
While it does not feel like a missed opportunity, I still wish the movie was executed better. Its a decent movie that most teenagers looking for a movie to watch with their friends should enjoy. Like I said before, the movie is worth a watch, especially if you’re into this genre. It may be a good idea to see it on a Tuesday(At a discounted price) or just wait for it to come out on Blu Ray!
Final Score: 60%
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