Choose or Die (formerly CURS>R) is a horror movie directed by Toby Meakins and stars Iola Evans, Asa Butterfield, and Eddie Marsan, alongside other cast members. The movie has a runtime of 85 minutes.
Netflix describes the movie as:
Tempted by a chance to win unclaimed prize money, two friends reboot a mysterious 1980s video game and step into a surreal world of next-level terror.
– Choose or Die review does not contain spoilers –
Choose or Die has an intriguing opening sequence. Without knowing anything, you are thrown into a very odd choice and before you can really get your head around what’s going on, you are slapped right across your cheek. After that, it’s pretty mundane until new deaths pile up around us and that’s when things get interesting. Or, does it?
Either way, Choose or Die’s premise kinda reminds me of Escape Room or even Countdown or maybe Jumanji or like the hundreds of other movies that bank on evil applications trying to murder you. With that in mind and with not a lot of expectations of this being a masterpiece, this horror movie is enjoyable. Like almost all horror movies these days, Choose or Die makes its deaths a hundred times gruesome to get a reaction out of its viewers and to make up for the fact that at the base of it, it’s quite tame and stale.
I think it’s the most enjoyable when the movie makes its characters choose between two horrible outcomes. Not so much when it tries to do more, especially with Kayla running around behind her dead brother. Honestly, that was just annoying to watch, especially because Kayla knows the reality of the situation. The more emotional moments, too, seem a bit boring and unnecessary, even though they are meant to give context and make the characters somewhat likeable or relatable.
As the movie continues, we get more of what we see in other movies. The mystery-solving, the resolution… you know, the likes. The pacing seriously falters here and the movie goes away from its brutal, bloody games to two somewhat adults trying to solve a puzzle and get to the truth. It also doesn’t help that Kayla and Isaac have absolutely no chemistry. It’s apparent that he likes her but it’s just so awkward between the two that you feel no sort of way for them or their relationship.
The myth behind the curse is just a horrible expositional CGI nightmare, and from there it just gets more stupid. Obviously, suspension of disbelief is essential, that’s a given. But there’s also a limit to how much disbelief you can suspend. After a while, choosing to watch the movie becomes a chore and an insult to your sanity. I don’t exactly know how the movie got from this crazy reality-altering horror game to tape coming out of someone’s mouth like a fountain.
The last half is absolutely horrendously stupid. There’re no other words for it. In the end, you realise that there’s absolutely no rhyme or reason behind this stupidity and you’re left wondering why you should have to be subjected to it. You expect more from it as the first half creates something interesting. But it just throws it away as it tries to be too cool for its own good.
Summing up: Choose or Die
There is a special place in hell for movies that take themselves too seriously and wind up confusing and boring their audience. Choose or Die is one such movie. A reminder of some great (and some very bad) movies of a decade ago, this one fails to meet any sort of expectations and adds poor Asa Butterfield in the mix for no good reason. The exposition-heavy last part is not only not scary, but it’s also boring as all hell. Skip this one to not get bored to death.
Choose or Die is streaming on Netflix.Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.