Have You Ever Seen: Are You Scared?

“a merciful death is better than a lifetime of pain.”

When a little movie titled, ‘Saw’ came out in 2004, it unleashed a new torture horror genre to the masses. I am a fan of the original Saw. After the first one, we were subjected to a sequel every year after. Six more, gut-wrenching movies were tossed to the masses. The final movie in the series came out last year. I am happy the series is over. The sequels just did nothing for me. I watched them every year. Not sure why I did. The stories they told were just a mess. They did all they could to make everything come full circle. While it did, the final ending was cheap and a huge let down. With Saw (iTunes), came countless other movies just like it. Eli Roth gave us two Hostel (iTunes) movies. Didn’t care for either. We had movies like, Wolf Creek (iTunes), The Collector, Eden Lake (iTunes), and many, more direct to video movies.

I don’t know why I watch these movies. I like horror movies. I like the sense of danger and fear. I know that I am safe in my house and no mad man is going to jump out and torture me with some crazy, deadly contraption. I have a go to service for movies like this. Tonight, I watched Are You Scared? (iTunes) Much like the Saw movies, the people involved are kidnapped and placed in an abandoned building. The six captives are led to believe they are starring in a hit show, ‘Are You Scared?’. Their audition tapes are them talking to the camera, telling it what their deepest fears are. While they are taking part in the ‘reality show’, they are each subjected to what fear the divulged. The bodies start to pile up it’s clear to them that this isn’t a game. It follows the same concept of Saw. There is a crazy person behind it all. He’s hidden behind a series of cameras and his voice is the only connection the players victims have between themselves and him. The only real difference between this movie and Saw is the villain. While Saw was full of dummies riding tricycles, the movies scary, bad guy looked like a the phantom of the opera, just minus the mask.

The Phantom sits in his room, spouting off puns (run little piggies…), watching the players run around. He tracks their movement via a tracking device. We never are told where the device is and the players are not aware of the device. The only issue I had with this is towards the end of the movie. While Kelly is hiding out in the Phantom’s lair, she sees another blip on the screen coming towards her. This blip is the Phantom himself. Explain to me, why would the killer track himself as well? Not a huge issue with the movie, it just added a little more to the nonsense this movie was putting out.

Don’t look for Oscar winning performances. The movie falls hard with the acting with a cast of literally, unknown people. It is very hard to feel much sympathy for any of them. The viewer should feel some sort of connection to the character. We’re suppose to get attached to them so when, or if they do die, we will feel the loss like they were someone we knew. But with poor acting and the dialogue being weak, whenever they did try to show some emotion or depth, it was like they called up their speech class teacher for some assistance.

Being a torture horror movie, it may have been the intent of the writer or director. If all the viewer is looking for is new and interesting ways to kill off people, then go easy on the heart of the film and put all the pot into the gore and shock value. The traps were all vivid reminders of the Saw franchise. From a key being surgically implanted inside someone, to the use of acid. Like I mentioned earlier, I am not fond of the sequels of the Saw movies but those at least were somewhat entertaining than this rubbish of a movie.

The movie did its best to throw us a huge twist. Sadly, (at least in my opinion) it fell flat. Even the final Saw movie had a better twist than this. The movie did spawn a sequel. It was released back in 2009. I will do my best and suffer through that one as well. I mean, if it’s a sequel, the kills have to be better. That’s the rules.

The movie is 79 minutes of riding on the coattails of a successful movie and its’ sequels. Anyone can make a movie where the death scenes are the reason people watch it. That is what this movie was aiming for. The story was just added in last minute. It isn’t a surprise that there is a sequel. People will watch that too. Will it be better than the first? Probably not. Will it be a complete rip off of more Saw movies? You, betcha. Take your chances with watching this movie. I will return later in time with a review of the sequel.

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