Talk to Me (2022) review

I can see how this would be a shoo-in among horror fans with sensibilities similar to mine. There’s a decent balance of drama and scares, etched around emotional pain that lures our main character in the direction of really bad choices. More like the worst choices possible, even for a grieving teenager.

The young partiers behave plausibly, I assume, though I don’t sympathize with them as much as the story suggests I should. Maybe my own adolescent experiences weren’t “Skins-phoria” enough for me to relate. Maybe I grew up with thin patience for certain folktale heroes and their fatalistic lack of impulse control: Why does he turn to look back? Why does she open the box? Why do they touch the forbidden treasure? Why do we keep wishing on the obviously cursed monkey’s paw? Always, always after being warned not to do these things.

You can tell I’m great at parties.

Miranda Otto as Sue and Marcus Johnson as Max are the literal adults in the room, and they’re the ones for whom I’m filled with dread while the kids play not-your-grandma’s-Ouija-board. Watching them, I really believe they are loving parents who are helpless to protect against a seductive and inevitable darkness.

Review on Letterboxd →