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review by Bobby Blakey

There are always films that try to capture whatever is popular in that generation and do something new with it. The latest Nerve takes on social media and phone apps to create an all new potentially dangerous game The film features a great young cast including Emma Roberts, Dave Franco, Machine Gun Kelly, Samira Wiley, Kimiko Glenn, Mile Heizer, and Emily Meade with directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman the team behind Catfish: the Movie and TV Show as well as a couple of the Paranormal Activity films. Could this film bring something cool to the next generation or will it not be a game worth playing?

Nerve follows a high school senior who finds herself immersed in an online game of truth or dare, where her every move starts to become manipulated by an anonymous community of "watchers." The idea for this film is really great and does manage to deliver on some level, but it also falls into the generic cracks hindering the film at points. The film has a very throwback feel to it despite focusing on the current obsession with smart phone apps and games like Pokemon Go. The story is a bit unbelievable as there is no way this thing could exist as it does in the film with only a handful of people playing. Our society is way too obsessed to sit back and just watch and let a small group be involved. That aside when they get to doing the tasks the film manages to be pretty entertaining in its own right. Emma Roberts and Dave Franco have great chemistry which helps to make the film work better than it might otherwise. I wasn’t a big fan of the ominous nature of the game as it gets to the end as it felt like everyone involved went crazy and then at the same time got over it. Not sure if something was missing in the edit to bring it all together in a better way or what, but I just felt like something was missing to connect it more cohesively.

In the end this is one of those films that works for what they are doing and offers up something different than the norm. You have to buy into the idea of it all for it to work, but if you do then you will likely have a good time with this flick. Decide for yourself and check out Nerve available now on Blu-ray and DVD from Lionsgate Home Entertainment.

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