Sinister Screens

Play Dead (2022) ★½

Play Dead



Criminology student Chloe fakes her own death to break into a morgue, in order to retrieve a piece of evidence that ties her younger brother to a crime gone wrong. Once inside, she discovers that a sadistic coroner is using the corpses for his sick and twisted business, and when he realises that Chloe still has a pulse, a terrifying game of cat and mouse ensues.


Yes, some things are worse than death! For instance, this movie.

I’ve heard reviewers state that this is dumb and they loved it. Problem is this movie is not one of those meant-to-be-stupid films. It’s a rather serious film which is meant to thrill the viewer by pushing them into a marathon of cat-and-mouse games. The dumb really comes into play in the writing of the story, the character’s decisions and actions. The believability of this story is way beyond even the most gullible persons’ limits.

With those scene descriptions above in the spoilers section, you’d expect this to be one of those zany comedic horror-zingers that everyone considers a classic. But this movie is not a comedy; it’s a serious thriller. It’s sad and dumb and relentlessly exhausting to watch.

But Bailee’s acting was great; as was O’Connell’s. He plays a deadpan coroner who, at one time, simply watches a scene unfold on a security camera and laughs out loud at the events (or perhaps at how bad the movie is turning out).

Play Dead is one of those projects that makes you realize how important writers, screenwriters and directors are to the outcome of a film. Even good actors can’t turn around films this bad.

Rating: ★½ (out of 5)

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