“Blumhouse’s Truth or Dare” (Universal)
By Catholic News Service
Rather than chilling viewers, director and co-writer Jeff Wadlow’s thriller merely succeeds in endangering its cast via a supernatural version of the titular game from which there is no apparent escape.
While visiting Mexico for spring break, a group of friends (most prominently Lucy Hale, Tyler Posey and Violett Beane) becomes trapped in the pastime after playing it inside an abandoned and accursed mission church. The stranger (Landon Liboiron) who led them there explains the rules, and the fact that the only way for him to stay alive was to expand the circle of players, before making his escape. Back home, fatalities follow as do relationship-altering revelations. But these have little impact on the audience since the imperiled band of college students are, one and all, mere types.
Given that the backstory involves a priest molesting young nuns and that one of the dares sends two of the characters to bed together, only grownups should subject themselves to this mediocre piece of moviemaking.
Much harsh violence with some gore, semi-graphic nonmarital sexual activity, shadowy rear nudity, a homosexuality theme, a couple of same-sex kisses, considerable crude and crass language. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.