‘Veronica’; or, How Hype Can Kill a Movie

Netflix has been rolling out new horror movies left and right, and it’s getting hard for a certain horror blogger to keep up with them (hey, I got to do the work that pays before I can have fun, okay?).

And honestly, I probably would not have watched Veronica had it not been for shit like this:

Promo Saying Veronica is Super Scary
Stop this shit.

Now, ever since high school, I’ve had issues with this kind of language:

“Oh, my gawd, Pride and Prejudice is the best book ever.”

“Blazing Saddles is the best movie ever.”

And so on.

I get that it’s petty but superlative claims like this have no real merit or backing. It’s all conjecture because elements of a story that works for one person may not work for another. And I get that this may sound hypocritical because, well, this whole website is based around reviewing horror movies and deciding if they’re good or not based on our own criteria [link to our rubric].

But if you’ve followed this website and our podcast for the past year, then you know that even Stormy and I don’t agree on everything. She enjoys a good jump scare and a lot of gore while I think modern horror has become too reliant on these tropes. But that’s okay because who would want to listen to a podcast where two girls jerk each other off for an hour.

Don’t answer that.

So, TL;DR:

Is Veronica the scariest movie ever made?

Short Answer: No.

Long Answer: Nooooooo?

Let’s break it down and see what works and what doesn’t work in “the scariest movie ever made.”

Acting

Child actors are always a hit or miss for me.

The Fuller House Kids? Terrible but please don’t stop making this show. I need it.

The Stranger Things kids? Delightful, and I hope they all have amazing careers.

That being said, these were good child actors. I thought Sandra Escacena did an amazing job with her role. I recognize that these roles are difficult to play and that they can get kind of intense so I applaud all the young actresses who do it so well.

And I will say that, for me, it’s kind of hard to gauge when someone is a good actor in a foreign language. I love foreign films and watch them a lot and, in general, they seem like they’re better actors than English actors. That being said, if you disagree with me about they’re acting drop a comment down below, but I thought this film was very well acted.

Story

Veronica is based on a true story. What horror movie that’s trying to prove itself as the scariest movie ever isn’t (cough, The Conjuring and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2005) come to mind). That being said, a real girl died for some, unknown, reason. I went into this at the end of our most recent podcast, but I’m not always the biggest fan of the “based on a true story” schtick to get people to watch a shitty movie.

Now, that might be hypocritical since I wrote a play loosely based on the true story of Armin Miewes.

How

Ev

ER

When it’s a demon possession movie using this, it really rubs me the wrong way. I’ve said in the past that I don’t believe in this shit, it comes with the Atheism territory. So, anything involving demon possession, I usually assume is the victim is suffering from illness be it mental or physical.

Now that that’s out of the way…

The story is your normal, average, nothing special dumb shit teenage girl plays with an ouija board and gets possessed by a demon. And not even a cool demon.

She and her friend have a seance during a solar eclipse and from there, her life becomes a living hell. And you can bet your sweet bum that there are spooky dream sequences featuring dead parents and hands appearing out on inanimate objects a-la Grave Encounters.

Now, while the story is dull and predictable like most others of this genre, I can see why some people would find it scary. Any time a quiet movie (shit, this movie is so quiet) suddenly gets loud, that’s going to get your blood pumping and your heart racing. And anytime the death of a child is involved, most people aren’t going to react well. So, I do see how these story elements would scare an average audience. And don’t even get me started about the blind nun. I get it. Evil nuns are scary, now stop making movies about them.

But overall, the story is dull and predictable, and it did not need to be longer than 90 minutes. At a certain point, it just starts to drag, and I was just waiting for this great, scary moment to come. But it never did. *Fart Noise*

Production

It was a well-made movie. The cinematography was wonderful, and I only have a few complaints.

It was too quiet. It’s so damn annoying when horror movies do this. You can barely hear the dialogue and then they crank up the sound for the screaming and the jump scares. It makes it really difficult to watch when other members of the house are sleeping… So, don’t watch this if the baby is asleep.

And there was this one scene that was just fucking weird. It’s toward the end when Veronica is trying to figure what’s going on. She’s reading a book and the camera zooms in as she’s flipping through the pages. That shot is then spliced together with her walking down the street, making it look like she was walking on the book. I don’t know. It was just weird.

Conclusion

Overall, I have to give “Veronica” a meh. It’s a well shot, well-acted horror flick that just does not live up to the hype.

Had I went into this movie blind, I might have enjoyed it more, but I was left bored, disappointed, and waiting for the scene that made people turn it off. But it never came. I’m willing to be the reason people turn this movie off is 1) it’s boring and 2) subtitles. Now, that’s not necessarily a race thing or anything malicious. I’m usually multitasking when I watch a movie, so having to read subtitles make that a little difficult. But yes, there are also dumb fucks who just don’t want to read subtitles because it’s too much work.

 

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