SELFIE FROM HELL – Film Review

Julia (Meelah Adams), an online vlogger from Germany, comes to the U.S. to visit her cousin Hannah (Alyson Walker). Upon her arrival, Julia falls fatefully ill, prompting Hannah’s suspicion of the strange and sudden illness. When unusual happenings start taking place in her home, Hannah begins a relentless internet search to discover the cause. She comes across Julia’s vlog entries and finds herself immersed deep in the web – too deep – in a place where terror knows no end.

Who would have thought that a horror film revolving around selfies would ever come to fruition? Well, I certainly didn’t, but against all odds, I am still shocked that this movie actually exists although I shouldn’t be. These types of bizarre and unintentionally hilarious films come out all the time, but my mind was still boggled when I saw the poster for Selfie from Hell, otherwise known as Selfie Man. Both titles are embarrassing, so pick your poison.

This had to have been made as a joke, right? I’m not entirely sure because in truth, Selfie From Hell plays out strangely serious despite its hilarious concept. Who knows? If this movie actually embraced how insanely ridiculous it really is, it could have ended up being a fun self-aware diversion in the horror genre.

Courtesy of Viva Pictures

But a lot of this film reminded me of Slender Man, another disastrously bad horror movie from just a few years ago. There is one difference between the two though – Slender Man had the potential to be excellent. Not only is the character of Slender Man one of the most popular characters in creepypasta history, but its lore is incredibly rich and it’s genuinely surprising that it took as long as it did for a movie revolving around the character to be made.

Both Selfie from Hell and Slender Man feature extremely weak characters that you simply can’t get attached to. They are one-dimensional in every sense of the word. We are supposed to care for them and their plight simply because they are the lead character, and that’s definitely not enough. We need to be given a reason to care about these people and we need to feel some sort of emotional attachment to these characters, but that is completely lacking here.

Not to mention that this movie feels strangely directionless. Erdal Ceylan surely tried to make Selfie from Hell a great movie. After all, what director intentionally goes out of their way to make a bad film? It’s just that there is virtually nothing on display that stands out in a unique or fresh way. It feels just like any other generic horror movie that you may be able to find on home video that you will regret paying for ten minutes in.

Overall Grade: F

MPAA Rating: R for some horror violence and a sexual reference

Cast: Alyson Walker, Tony Giroux, Meelah Adams, Ian Butcher, Tyler A.H. Smith, Shaun Morse, Matthew Graham

Directed by: Erdal Ceylan

Distributed by: Viva Pictures

Release Date: May 4, 2018

Running Time: 73 minutes

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