Viral (2016) Comes to use from directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman and writers Barbara Marhall and Christopher Landon. The film is an outbreak horror film that takes place in the idle of god knows where. An outbreak has happened off screen and we know this because it’s on the news. We learn about the symptoms of what the news is now calling the worm flue. We cut to a girl creepily staring at a couple making out in a hallway of a random high school. This is our main girl, Emma, and the movie being self-aware, calls her out on being a creeper. We are introduced to her best friend? Her only friend? It doesn’t matter because this is the last we hear from her because she is clearly infected. We meet Emma’s love interest Evan, who is the love interest due to his sex appeal? Emma’s desire to have sex with him? From the initial dialogue, that is the depth of her attraction to the love interest.
We meet the sister, Stacey, who is of course the rebellious one and the complete opposite of Emma. We learn more about the virus and that there has been a quarantine. Oh and the best friend has become fully infected at this point. The virus starts to spread through out the city and we learn this because the movie tells us. Instead we get to watch go to a party, get to see the sisters bond, and of course watch the Machine Gun Kelly cameos. After the one-party scene, and it is a terrible party, Stacey gets infected. The rest of the movie drags on where nothing really happens and Stacey struggles to keep her infection a secret.
I don’t know where to begin with this movie. This is the type of horror movie where everyone dies off camera. We get to learn about death through exposition or implication. The biggest issue is that you are stuck with these two sisters throughout the whole movie. It’s like they ran out of money after renting the house where most of the movie takes place that they couldn’t afford anything else. I say the virus doesn’t matter because it barely ever shows up and when it does, it is a shitty jump scare.
Fucking Evan. There is no reason for Evan to be in this movie. He is actually kind of awkward and creepy which I guess works for being Emma’s love interest, but I don’t understand why they are together. Mostly because they are the only ones left in this town for the duration of the movie. This guy can’t act to save his life so scenes where he is supposed to be emotional, or where he is supposed to be scared don’t work because he stands there blankly. They also work really hard to give him a sad story so that maybe you will feel bad for him and ignore his terrible acting. All done through exposition of course.
If you are looking for a good epidemic movie, look somewhere else because most of the time you are stuck dealing with these two girls and their problems. The virus is glossed over so vaguely that I still can’t tell you what it does. Are they zombies? Are they aliens? Who fucking knows.
Although the first half wasn’t terrible, the last half falls off quick and I was sitting here wishing it would just end. This movie would have been over a lot sooner if Stacey hadn’t gone to the party. Or, instead of hiding, they had left like the rest of the teens. But nope, of course everyone in this movie lacks rationality and we have to pay for it with our time. While it isn’t the worst horror movie, or even the worst pandemic movie I have seen, it is bad. Check it out if you like watching bad movies for fun and like to make fun of it. I caution you though, you will run of things to say. I give this film a 3 out of 10.
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