Directed by Danny Philippou and Michael Philippou, Talk to Me excels in giving the scare factor but drops the cat in the second half!
When I went for the screening of Talk to Me, I didn't expect to come out feeling traumatised and happy at the same time. While watching horror movies make me happy, some aspects do make it traumatic. And watching an A24 movie is one of them. We can't expect any less from an A24 production - It had the jump scares, the aura, and just the perfect amount of absence and presence of the horror factor throughout the film. A24 definitely didn't disappoint me with the horror element in the movie but the movie's second half felt boring and predictable on so many different levels!
Talk to Me is about a group of teenagers Mia (Sophie Wilde), Riley (Joe Bird), Jade (Alexandra Jensen), Daniel (Otis Dhanji), Hayley (Zoe Terakes), and Jose (Chris Alosio) who uses a ceramic hand to communicate with the dead, but end up unleashing a dark force that threatens their lives. The story then shifts to Mia who accidentally contacts her dead mom through Riley using the ceramic hand and things go south after that. The only rule of "playing" with the evil hand was not to exceed over 90 seconds which is exactly what Riley and Mia didn't care to follow. After contacting, Riley gets stuck in a world of spirits that makes him go crazy and harm himself. As we cross the first half of the movie, the plot doesn't quite hold our interest.
The Philippou brothers do a great job of creating a sense of dread and suspense. It's a well-made horror film with some genuinely scary moments but as a streamlined horror enthusiast, I wouldn't call it the scariest movie I've ever seen! Though with its not-so-clever premise, the film had likable and relatable characters who gave the performance of their lives. Especially Mia and Riley, the two possessed characters in the movie showed us how it's done when it comes to making us feel ten different emotions by just acting it out.
The only complaint about the movie would be that it's slow-paced in the first half and chaotic in the second half which shakes off the balance of the premise. While it had amazing actors on board, the special effects of the movie deserve all the appreciation. Overall, I thought Talk to Me was a decent attempt. It's well-made and atmospheric, and it has some genuinely scary moments.
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