“Unfriended,” Cautionary tale of why the delete history can’t delete everything


“Unfriended” follows a group of teens who are having a chat session. One seemingly regular hangout with friends on a Skype group chat turns into a night of terror. All is well until Laura Barns, a former friend of the teen, joins their chat. Barns committed suicide after a humiliating video of her drunk at a party was posted online, and she is back and is out for revenge. She demands to know who posted the video, and threatens someone will die if they don’t tell her. What ensues is a night of fear, paranoia, secrets and brutal revenge.

The movie is directed by Levan Gabriadze, a small-time European director from Russia. The movie is produced by Jason Blum, a man considered to be a trendsetter of modern horror films out today. His credits include films like “The Purge” and “Paranormal Activity” series, “Sinister” and “Dark Skies.” The cast consists of unknown actors who do a good job of selling the horrific idea of teenagers being attacked by a cyber ghost.

Unfriended was a bit disturbing at times due to its true life situation. From slut shamed to embarrassing videos of hurts victims, the movie connects on a deeply emotional level. Even though this movie’s take on this topic is overly extreme, it does shed some light on the modern tragedy that is cyber bullying and how it happens more than it’s reported.

The visual effects were somewhat interesting. In some scenes the desktop screens would glitch out and play music at unwanted times or screw with audio and tabs windows would pop up and close randomly. There were pretty interesting uses of Spotify and Facebook. In some scenes, the Facebook chat windows would glitch out, and Spotify playlist would change entirely from what they originally were. Since this is a horror movie, there are a ton of jump scares throughout, and this movie uses bad internet connections to cut off people in the group, only to have them show up again brutally murdered.

The only bad thing about this movie is how outlandish some of the death scenes are. One of the kids sticks his hand in a blender, only to have his hand mangled and destroyed. Another part that is too far fetched is how fast the characters turn on each other due to a personal dilemma in the middle of the film.

Overall, this well-thought-out horror film deals with a very interesting issue that many teens deal with today: people being cruel enough to post embarrassing things of them that could ruin their lives. Sadly, “Unfriended” falls into the generic pitfalls of all horror movies that come out today, from generic characters and missed opportunities with the ending.

Grade: C+