Talk To Me is undoubtedly one of the most intense and fascinating teen horror films we’ve had in a long while. Helmed by first time feature film directors and twin brothers Michael and Danny Philippou, this social media era horror film feels grounded in the way that we know teenagers act, but never too modern that the audience is so out of touch with what kids these days are saying and doing. In an age where people would rather record someone getting attacked and find themselves trying to document everything in their lives, Talk To Me succeeds in showing us just how horrific things can get when you stand by and watch evil from a distance.
Grieving the loss of her mother as the date of her mother’s passing approaches, Mia (Sophie Wilde) finds herself spending all her time at her friend Jade’s (Alexandra Jensen) house with her and Jade’s younger brother, Riley (Joe Bird). When the trio sneak out to a high school party, they witness a new party trick where someone holds a creepy looking ceramic hand and says “Talk To Me” out loud to invite a spirit to the table. Once the spirit arrives, that person says, “I Let You In” and the spirit supposedly takes control of you. Mia volunteers thinking it can’t be more than a prank, but she soon learns that the hand possesses unnatural powers which yield horrific consequences.
Before the Philippou twins delivered one of the more frightening and unsettling horror films in recent years, the duo went under the name RackaRacka and were a YouTube sensation creating short horror films in Australia! The duo is a perfect fit for A24, a production company which has excelled with independent films and has produced several original and fantastic horror/thriller films in the last decade. With a $4,000,000 budget this film is the perfect example of why less is often more when it comes to scaring audiences with something that feels almost too real. Despite not being overly gory, the film never has an issue showing you some messed-up imagery that’s sure to burn into your brain for a while.
Talk To Me keeps you emotionally invested in the well-being of the protagonists, focusing mostly on Mia but looking at her friends through her warped lens as well. The blend of grief and horror works exceptionally well in this film, providing great emotional highs, but also taking you to some dark and horrifying lows. The horror on display here is of a jarring and unpredictable type that’s made scarier by regular people becoming shockingly irregular and insane. There were more than a dozen moments where I was audibly gasping and moving to cover my ears because I knew something deranged was about to happen. Despite being terrified while watching half of the time, I was thoroughly impressed with what the Philippou’s had to say and show with this film. It’s certainly one to see in the theater and preferably not alone!
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