The Stream: Not scary enough or innovative enough in the horror genre.
The Big Screen: Good humor and evokes stress throughout the movie.
The Final Bill: Countdown is a stressful ordeal that provides you with familiar frights for a night in.
-S2SRuntime: 1hr 23 mins, early mid-after credits scene
Rating: PG-13 (a little cursing, blood/death)
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Director: Justin Dec
Notable Trailers: Knives Out, The Rhythm Section (looks intriguing), Black Christmas, Doctor Sleep, 21 Bridges, and My Spy.
5, 4, 3, 2, and welcome back to Stream to Big Screen! This week the clock ran out and we found ourselves at a premier showing of Countdown. Just in time for Halloween season, Countdown brings us a horror/thriller film with a familiar feel. Justin Dec both directed and wrote this money grab of a movie. Countdown follows Nurse Quinn, played by Elizabeth Lail, as she struggles with her own mortality due to a new popular app. The new app, countdown, is becoming very popular with people who are curious, jokingly or actually, about when they will die. Unbeknownst to those who accept the app, this is no joking matter. We follow Quinn as her time runs out.
While Countdown has a nice contemporary and technological aspect, the movie keeps it old school evil as well. Similar to the reboot of Chucky, we get a new technology spin on a familiar horror storyline. This spin is both a positive and a negative. While we leave the movie appreciating the use of the app as a device, we also realize this is the same exact storyline as other horror movies. Picture a mixture of Final Destination, Truth or Dare, Ouija, and Lights Out. It’s like Director Dec sat down and said, “How can I direct a film that people feel they’ve already seen before but has a couple new pieces and people will pay for?”
Honestly, the movie had a few eerie moments (jumps) throughout it but for some reason we felt left wanting. It felt as if I never got scared like I should’ve been. You know a movie isn’t truly scary when you can walk out of the theater without watching behind you or staying out of the shadows. They cheated the audience out of the fright they deserved. Particularly in my theater, I felt the patrons were watching the movie as a team. We giggled at parts together. We whispered, “don’t turn around” and “if you don’t run” together. It felt like we were in our living room watching a horror movie marathon.
Needless to say, this is a movie you can wait to see on a streaming service. This is the perfect movie to catch on FX near Halloween. Not because it’s bad but because it’s got enough humor to keep you entertained and not scary enough to ruin your evening. Catch Countdown when it hits any streaming service. You’ll enjoy this movie if you pay for a rental or the cheapest possible matinee, but you’ll truly enjoy this movie, if you don’t pay for it.