Nerve is about an online game, called Nerve (apt, I know), where you can either play or watch people play dares. Vee, Emma Roberts, signs up due to boredom and being told she is boring. At first she has a great time completing dares and getting money for it, but things turn sour when she attempts to inform the police about goings on. “Snitches get stitches” as they said in the film, I won’t spoil the end.
This is a really intriguing concept, probably because society is so close to apps like this already, we already showcase our lives online as it is. The game, Nerve, felt like an extreme version of Periscope with the power to destroy entire lives. Ariel Shulman and Henry Joost were the perfect people to direct this film as the concept feels very catfishy as it is.
Emma Roberts and Dave Franco had incredible chemistry which really added to the overall vibe of completing the dares and the emotional rollercoaster presented in the film. Dave Franco was the standout performance as Ian. He showed really good emotion and brought the character to life perfectly, this is my favourite performance of Dave Franco’s. Emma Roberts was also fantastic, as she always is, she also brought her character to life and showed good emotion and the ability to change emotion quickly as appropriate.
As stated above the film felt very catfishy which worked in the context of Nerve, but I feel as if Shulman and Joost could branch out a bit and try something new. Goodness knows they have the talent of telling a story. In saying that there was some really good cinematography in this film, lighting was used very cleverly and neither felt overused or out of place.
Tension in a film of this type is important and boy did they build tension. The best thing about this film is that you genuinely don’t know what’s going to happen. It didn’t feel like an “everything will be a happy ending” type of film which was appealing until there actually was a happy ending. There are some really great messages in the film, but I feel it would have made more of an impact if one of the characters had actually died. There is brief mention about other people dying through the game, but the message would have been made more impactful if a character we’d gotten to know had been killed too. Although Catfish was more of a documentary, the thing we love about it is the message they are conveying gets played out and he ISN’T talking to who he thought.
Due to the reasons above the ending is very disappointing. It was nearly a perfect film until it got to the Finals of the game where the dare was to shoot the other player in the final and everyone was rooting for other people to die. It felt Hunger Gamesey and sick. They so nearly had a perfect film until they made everyone feel guilty for being an “accessory to murder” despite no one actually dying.
This was a very good film with strong messages that weren’t really played out. A very enjoyable watch which is definitely worth a second watch.