Nerve (2016)

Are you a Watcher or a Player? Watchers pay to watch the Players take on dares, in this game which is like Truth or Dare without the truth. Kiss a stranger, try on a $4000 dress… but as the dares get crazier the urge to break the one rule – don’t tell! – gets stronger. And then… well, you’ll have to watch to find out!

In my weekend of binge watching movies at the cinema, Nerve ended up being the stand out film. My expectations weren’t high, and yet it impressed me: yes, skewed towards a more teenage audience, but then that urge to do something drastic to shake your life up never really goes away, I reckon.

The quiet little girl needing to become more adventurous is Vee, played by a doe-like Emma Roberts, with Dave Franco helping her navigate the world of the Nerve game. They make a charming enough pair, although Roberts felt a little whiny as the stakes get higher. What surprised me more was the story telling hangs together better than I would have expected, allowing the showy on-screen graphics (simulating the tech world) to impress rather than be the only substance.

I found Nerve a pleasant surprise: a well-thought out near-future (if you watch closely, you’ll see the clue that it’s 2020, as well as a cheeky headline about Franco sibling the senior ;)) and good levels of tension, while at the same time a rather damning cautionary tale about social media and anonymous internet interactions dulling our humanity. Worth the look.

Released: 11th August 2016
Viewed: 28th August 2016
Running time: 96 minutes
Rated: 15

My rating: 7/10

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