OUIJA is a film based on the board game of the same name, which is in turn based on the OUIJA board itself. The film production companies Platinum Dunes and Blumhouse productions thought it was a good property to bring to the cinema and there you have it.
Now, the possibilities are endless when it comes to crafting a story around what can happen with an Ouija board and a bunch of teens. This movie, however, decides to go down a bland road, with the story leading to lacklustre scares and a head-scratching story that doesn’t always make sense.
Look into the film’s production history and you’ll find that it was quite troubled, with rewrites from different writers and reshoots leading the film to be entirely remoulded at the request of the film’s studio.
Apparently, before the multiple rewrites and reshoots, the film was going to be big, maybe even in the way Jumanji was, except demonic and terrifying. But the studio feared the budget and maybe even the idea and ordered it to be fixed.
The result is a film that feels possessed itself, as if two entities are fighting within it – the original story and the one that the other writers have created. So, not only is the story muddled but the scares across the board fall rather flat the majority of the time.
The cast of good looking actors make the most of the script that they have to work with but seeing as though each of these characters are unremarkable, it makes it really hard to care for the journey they are about to go on.
The final product – a lacklustre and confusing story that really does feel like it was written by a handful of writers with their own solid ideas – isn’t just devoid of scares – it’s rather ordinary.
J’s Verdict: ☆