A Terrifying Technological Horror Journey Film Review: “Come Play” by Dylanna Fisher
“Come Play” takes you on a spine-chilling ride into technology and supernatural terror. Released in 2020, this atmospheric horror film explores the dangers of our hyper-connected world and the horrifying consequences that unfold when an evil creature enters the digital realm. Let’s dive into the gripping story, commendable performances, and the overall impact of “Come Play.”
Reviewing “Come Play”
The story of “Come Play” embraces certain horror clichés while offering its unique take on the fears associated with technology and supernatural entities. It pays homage to earlier films like the “Poltergeist” series but distinguishes itself by focusing on the dark side of modern connectivity. The movie creates an unsettling atmosphere through tension and well-executed jump scares, while the “Poltergeist” series relies on paranormal and haunted house tropes. It blended suspense, supernatural elements, and adventure to provide a chilling and memorable experience. Although “Come Play” capitalizes on contemporary fears and modern horror techniques, the “Poltergeist” series remains a beloved classic for its iconic scenes and memorable characters.
Technology has always played a significant role in horror movies, from classics like “A Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984) to modern films like “Unfriended” (2015). Horror often delves into the dark side of technology and its effects on society. In “Come Play,” we witness the fears of modern technology and how traditional modes of communication can transform. The film addresses concerns about children befriending imaginary or online friends who may be dangerous, highlighting the generalized terror of communication and the consequences of being too open. Technophobic horror movies like this one aim to remind us of the effects of technology on our lives and urge caution in its use.
In “Come Play” and the “Poltergeist” series, supernatural horror takes center stage, but each film approaches the genre uniquely. Both movies revolve around malevolent entities haunting families, but their execution and storytelling diverge significantly. “Come Play” introduces a mysterious creature from another dimension that targets a young boy through his electronic devices, generating a sense of unease and vulnerability in the digital age. On the other hand, the “Poltergeist” series explores more traditional haunting elements, with paranormal entities wreaking havoc in suburban homes. Iconic scenes like the static-filled TV screen and ghostly encounters in children’s bedrooms have solidified its status as a classic. “Come Play” also focuses on psychological horror and fear of the unknown. At the same time,e the “Poltergeist” series strikes a balance between supernatural elements and family dynamics, emphasizing themes of protection and sacrifice.
One aspect that elevates “Come Play” is its clever incorporation of the cartoon “SpongeBob SquarePants.” Throughout the film, the young protagonist, Oliver, finds solace in watching episodes of the beloved show. The movie even uses clips from the cartoon as a means of communication, adding depth to the narrative. Although communication apps as a form of communication board have been used in horror films before, “Come Play” implements a unique twist by introducing television communication towards the end. The mother asks questions, and the answers appear word by word as the channels flip, resembling a current device that cycles through radio frequencies.
Overall, “Come Play” delivers a sombre tone. While it may not terrify audiences to the core, its emotional impact resonates and tugs at the heartstrings. The movie is a suitable PG-13 horror film, drawing inspiration from several others. The relatability of the characters’ struggles, particularly the father’s uncertainty and the mother’s involvement, contributes to the overall sadness conveyed on screen. It is disheartening to witness the lack of communication between family members until a crisis occurs.
Larry, the evil entity in the film, symbolizes a profound sense of loneliness that arises from an increasingly interconnected yet isolated society. As people become more absorbed in their screens, genuine social connections diminish, leading to heightened loneliness. Such theories and experiences have been explored in various paranormal horror movies. However, “Come Play” takes a different approach by shedding light on the nuanced reasons behind loneliness, such as strained family relationships and personal experiences.
The emotional impact of “Come Play” is particularly evident in poignant moments, like when Byron sits beside Oliver and watches “SpongeBob SquarePants” with him. This heartwarming scene elicits genuine emotions from the audience. The film’s ending also delivers an emotional roller coaster with deeply rooted symbolism. The final stage, where the mother spins Oliver around the room while locking eyes with him, leads to a heart-wrenching moment for the husband. It’s a moment that leaves viewers profoundly moved.
In conclusion, “Come Play” is a terrifying exploration of technological horror. While it shares similarities with films like the “Poltergeist” series, it distinguishes itself through its focus on contemporary fears and modern horror techniques. The film delves into the perils of modern connectivity and delivers a sombre but thought-provoking narrative. Through notable performances and the clever incorporation of “SpongeBob SquarePants,” “Come Play” captivates audiences. It reminds us to enjoy technology while remaining conscious of its impact on our lives.