Choose Movie Review
Directed by Marcus Graves
Written by Brandon Camp and Mike Thompson
2010, Region 2, PAL, 100 minutes, Rated 18 (UK)
DVD released on 17th January 2011
Katheryn Winnick as Fiona Wagner
Nicholas Tucci as Scar Lip
Kevin Pollak as Sheriff Tom Wagner
Richard Short as Detective Benson
Bruce Dern as Dr. Ronald Pendleton
The opening titles begin like so many other better films do, with a faceless killer moping around his lair and cutting himself, scribbling over drawings pasted all over the wall and writing DIE DIE DIE over faces in photographs. Okay, it didn’t happen quite like that, but you get the idea. We are to envisage a moody psychological killer with lots of time on his hands to hold grudges and plan some good old fashioned comeuppance.
One night our fledgling serial killer invades a pretty teenager’s home to begin his reign of terror. He has bound and gagged her parents and gives her a clear ultimatum; he will kill either her mother or her father. “You choose”, he insists. If she doesn’t choose, he will just kill them both. After much screaming and crying, she makes her decision and one of them dies. Fast forward a few years and journalism student, Fiona, who happens to be the daughter of a detective, takes an interest in a new spate of murders that seem to be following in the same vein.
It’s the anniversary of the first deaths and the excitable local teens are getting in to the spirit of things. Fiona starts to get emails from a mysterious character that seems to know a lot about the original killings. It’s up to Fiona to get to the bottom of who this murderer is and, more importantly, why he is so intent on getting her attention. And after some inspired (and some ridiculous) scenes, our heroine finishes up in true and dramatic Final Girl style.
Choose has some of the promising elements of the Scream films with its sexy teens on campus feel. There are also obvious references to the torture powerhouse that is Saw, with its game-playing killer, but sadly neither heights are ever quite reached. That’s not to say this film is bad, it is just slightly off key. The social comment and murder by numbers repetition premise is more suited to a sleek and sexy finish and not the grainy, grubby end product here. It’s almost as though a new horror sub-genre has been born out of the torture – ultimatum death, perhaps. So, want to watch a light-hearted whodunnit where, by the end of it, you can’t even recall whydunnit? You choose.
Video, Audio and Special Features:
Video, audio and special features will not be graded as this was a screener
Want to comment on this review? You can leave one below or head over to the HorrorTalk Review Forum.