Monday, March 9, 2015

Dare (2009)

Number Rolled: 70
Movie Name/Year: Dare (2009)
Genre: Thriller (wtf, really Netflix? Who was high when they determined this?)
Length: 90 minutes
Rating: R
Production Companies: Next Wednesday Productions, Gigantic Pictures
Producers: David Brind, Jason Orans, Mary Jane Skalski
Director: Adam Salky
Writer: David Brind
Actors: Emmy Rossum, Cady Huffman, Ashley Springer, Matthew Garrick, Brianne Berkson, Lucy McMichael, Annie Hibbs, Zach Gilford, Chris Riggi, Rooney Mara, Alan Cumming, Emily McNamara, Suzanne Savoy, Adam Fleming, Ana Gasteyer, Wayne Pyle, David Brind, Brea Bee, Sandra Bernhard, Michael Braun

Alexa Walker wants to be an actress. When her drama club is set to perform in front of a Broadway star, she gets to work to try and ensure she’ll stand out. Unfortunately, her drama partner Johnny Drake, seems to have no interest in putting in any effort at all. Luckily, her best friend Ben Berger is there to help her through it.

It may sound like a coming-of-age comedy, but don’t be fooled. In the interest of avoiding spoilers wherever possible, I only describe the beginning of the movie in The Random Review, not the plot.

This film definitely took a dramatic left turn after the start. Considering it’s labeled a thriller, I thought that left turn would bring us somewhere dark and pulse-racing. Somewhere, you know, thrilling. In fact, the whole reason I added the movie to my list was because the comedy-plot came with a “thriller” genre. I thought that was unique. Instead, Dare is a drama. Someone was on acid when they decided it was thriller.

I want to say the mislabeling is why I didn’t like the movie, but I can’t.

The plot was scattered. Showing some story from each of the main character’s perspective would have been a good idea, if it had been done right. For instance, The Rules of Attraction also showed the story from several different perspectives. Unlike Dare, they managed to do it in a way that heightened the viewing experience. This film just felt broken.

Not only that, but there was no ending.

The Sopranos ended mid-word, but it left viewers with a general idea of where it was going; enough to offer debate. Dare seemed to end before the final scene. No questions are answered. There is no payoff. There’s not even the illusion of payoff.

Dare got the extra “.5” for one reason.

The actors weren’t bad. Emmy Rossum (Shameless, You’re Not You, The Day After Tomorrow) and Ashley Springer (Teeth, The Wolf of Wall Street, The Visitor) made their characters very convincing. It was Zach Gilford (The Mob Doctor, Friday Night Lights, Super), however, that really took his character to the next level. He brought so much life to Johnny Drake, that it made me angrier that there was no ending. I needed to know the rest of his story and wound up with a teaser that led to nothing. 


Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 64%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 34%

Netflix’s Prediction for Me – 2.6/5
Trust-the-Dice Score1.5/5

P.S. Not a thriller. Seriously. I can’t say it enough.

Movie Trailer:

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