DAILY BEAST CONFUSED BY HORROR FLICK ‘SHOOK’
The best of horror deals with society in the age is deriving from. All past famous horror films have emulated the moment in time is originated in.
This new film being reviewed by the DAILY BEAST appears to be that very type if film: It is a horror that targets the ugliness of the influencer culture of Twitter, YouTube, and other social media companies..
From Nick Schager, a few notable quotes from the piece:
Writer/director Jennifer Harrington wades into these digital waters with Shook, a thriller that’s heavy on censure and woefully light on scares. A Shudder exclusive premiering on the horror streaming platform on Feb. 18, its tale concerns Mia (Daisye Tutor), a young, pretty blonde influencer whose claim to fame are makeup videos for a cosmetics brand. The phoniness of Mia’s vocation is underscored by the film’s introductory scene, in which she and two other women—including “beauty influencer of the year” Genelle (Genelle Seldon)—pose for the paparazzi, only for Harrington to cut to a master shot of this newsworthy event, which is really just a staged red carpet that’s been constructed in an abandoned parking lot. This entire world’s phoniness is thus laid bare succinctly, and sharply.
The opening urine:
That’s not the only pointed thing about Shook’s opening; when her dog pees all over her swanky dress, Genelle rushes off to a nearby bathroom, where she winds up getting stabbed through the chin with her designer high heel shoe. Subsequent headlines indicate that this slaying is related to a spate of recent Southern California attacks by a killer that primarily preys on dogs, and in the aftermath of her colleague’s demise, Mia takes to social media to proclaim, “I’m shook. Seriously.” Given that everything about these individuals is performative bullshit, shook she most certainly is not. In fact, she barely gives it another thought, instead turning her attention to her own dilemma: having to watch her sister Nicole’s (Emily Goss) dog Chico and, in the process, miss out on a big livestream with her boyfriend Santi (Octavius J. Johnson) and friends Lani (Nicola Posener) and Jade (Stephanie Simbari).
Shook slowly develops into a wannabe-nightmare in which Mia is harassed by unbelievable threats from Kellan, who snatches Chico and then promises to kill her friends (and the pooch) if she doesn’t answer his questions and play his games…
But in the end it appears the film gets a negative score:
Shook’s revelations further underscore the disingenuousness of influencers—what they say, what they do, who they claim to be—and, by extension, everything seen and heard on Instagram et al. Yet in a 2021 grappling with a tidal wave of democracy-undermining disinformation, such notions come off as dully obvious. The cast’s performances are uniformly bland, and Harrington’s inability to bestow Mia or her cohorts with distinctive personalities turns them into mere vehicles for her material’s familiar message. Worse, however, is that the cat-and-mouse game which eventually kicks into gear is clumsily staged, its helter-skelter rhythm doing much to neuter any menace or peril. It’s also borderline illogical, hinging on incidents that make no sense regardless of the explanations provided by characters’ dialogue.
Why Shook—a movie about pulling the curtain back on social media influencers’ narcissism and insincerity—revolves around dog murders is anyone’s guess, but such randomness is in keeping with the endeavor’s general sloppiness.
Perhaps the reason for the mundane nature of the dog mystery is because social media is devoid of things that matter.. the influencer culture is scripted. It’s without human emotion. So why not have a story line that borderlines on boring mindlessness.