SPOILER WARNING: THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS
It's the Revenge Of The Nerds sequel we've all been waiting for! The kids at school who get bullied secretly arrange a party for the popular kids who abuse them, then trap them all at the party. Torture ensues.
This is what we call torture porn. Not my usual interest, but I was curious because of the plot. But yes, people get tortured, you cringe as they suffer horribly. There's plenty of disfigurement and mutilation, but the psychological torture is the worst of it.
2/5 Acupuncture Needles.
I don't know who to root for... this is some truly terrible bullying before the torture party.
The moments when people weren't being tortured were nice.
Probably the worst thing (aside from nasty torture you don't want to watch, but you can't really label that a failure, right?) is when the Heroic Popular Kid With A Heart Of Gold escapes and returns with a gun, and he actually says the line "Fate brought me here, to stop you." Maybe that's realistic... teenagers would probably want to go for something melodramatic. But it sure sounded cheesy to me. Also, on another note, acupuncture needles don't hurt. That's why they're so super skinny. This girl was jamming them into someone and he's screaming in agony. I know you could apply them improperly (as she was) and they wouldn't be painless
, but they're teeny tiny, there's only so much they can hurt!
A Suspension Bridge Too Far:
I don't know why movies insist on this, but in this movie, the villains invented their own "acid cream", a mix of acid and nicer things that you can smear on someone's face and it gradually eats it away, hurting more and more over time. Now, that could happen, I imagine, I'm no chemist. But why invent some special new substance? They could've just sprayed acid on the person's face for the same plot effect. No, it wouldn't have been slow, but they never do anything much with the fact that it is slow in the movie anyway. Replace the slowness with sprinkling a little bit on them so they know the threat of a lot of it. Movies always like to invent new things, which is unlikely, when existing things would work fine.
Dead body jumps up and attacks you... hmm, I'm sure there's a few others, especially in the Heroic Kid's escape sequence, but overall this was not your typical horror movie.
Well, I was very interested from the beginning, and the movie even opens with a weird black and white sequence that pulls you in wondering what's going on. And frankly it remained very interesting, right up until the torture! I mean, the story of how horrific the abuse of these kids was (I hope that's not realistic, but... I remember high school, I'm not sure you could overdramatize how awfully kids treat each other), and their plotting of revenge. It was also a little hard to watch, not just because of the torture, but because this was basically Columbine. It was hard not to think of it in real terms, which made it more powerful. And the costumes that the villains wore were downright creepy. Except the leader in his gas mask. That just looked dumb. So this was a very difficult watch all around. I think in the right hands, this story could've been some kind of twisted Oscar material with all the complex issues it brings up. But these aren't the right hands. I can't point to much that is really bad about it in terms of filmmaking or acting, it's just not elevated above an ordinary schlocky horror movie, despite being about something so much more important and complex. What we end up with is a complex-sounding excuse to show some torture porn, really. And that's why I can't rate it too highly. That and the fact that I don't like watching people get tortured.
First, the villains missed an opportunity to guard the people they crippled - they literally dragged them into an unlocked room and left them there. Secondly, the movie missed the opportunity for any of them to escape, or jump out and attack the badguys! I mean really, they were injured to varying degrees, but I guarantee you most of them could still walk at least. What was up with that?
Never get acupuncture.