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Fantasia 2019: Dreadout Review

2019 97 min.

Tower survival horror with a twist. Similar to the horror puzzle game with the same name and inspired by the FATAL FRAME series, the characters use modern gadgets like smartphones to view and fight spirits. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Plot: A group of teens want to increase their social media popularity and they figure the only way to do that is to go live on Instagram while exploring a long abandoned and haunted apartment building. They persuade fair faced Linda to join them as her social media presence always seems to boost view counts. Linda is hesitant but succumbs to peer pressure.  

The building is creepy, quiet, and empty. But one apartment unit in particular has police tape draped upon it and the teens get curious. Within, they find an old parchment that only Linda is able to read. Once she recites the words, a whirl pool emerges from the floor, circled by arcane text. It's a door to a spirit realm and its guardians are angered that it has been breached.

Inventively horrifying creatures, vibrant photography, and at times, hilarious. Adapting the game to the screen, creators spliced in many references to classic western horror movies while retaining a very distinct Indonesian flair. It takes two different worlds and mixes well. I personally loved the idea of new technology versus old culture. It makes the film captivating and stylish. I also enjoyed the sharp effects and the heavy Indonesian cultural references, it was an interesting and new experience for horror.


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