It’s time for your newly favorite day of the week! It’s Movie beatdown time! We will talk all things with horror movies and television. We will cover everything from slashers to slayers. Beheadings to bitches…I’ll talk about all of it!
This breakdown is “Would You Rather”. Now, the purpose of the beatdown is to dissect these movies, so if you don’t want the movie spoiled…don’t read the content below. This breakdown is like Wikipedia…just with more pee. You have been warned! If you don’t have time to watch the movie and would like a quick synopsis, then keep reading and let me tell you all about this movie from my gay eyes. It’s like a synop-sis!
Would You Rather is a 2012 American psychological horror-thriller film, directed by David Guy Levy and starring Brittany Snow and Jeffrey Combs. It is based on the party game “would you rather,” and centers on a woman named Iris as she attends a dinner party, where she must partake in life-threatening games to help her sick younger brother secure a donor after he contracts leukaemia. The film premiered at Screamfest 2012.
Without further ado…let’s get to the beatdown!
Iris, a young woman played by Brittany Snow, from many of my favorite movies (“Pitch Perfect”, “John Tucker Must Die”, “Prom Night” remake. I loved growing up with her when she was on a little horse and pony of a tv show called “American Dreams”. If you can’t tell, I love Brittany Snow!), caring for her sick brother Raleigh, is unable to afford the costs of his treatment for leukaemia.
She struggles with finding work to help pay for the costs since her parents both died in an accident, leaving her to drop out of college. Raleigh’s oncologist Dr. Barden introduces Iris to Shepard Lambrick, a philanthropist who offers her a deal: if she wins a parlour game at a dinner party he is hosting, he will pay for Raleigh’s treatment and locate a bone marrow donor for him without any waiting lists or complications. She was initially reluctant to partaking in the game. Suddenly, Dr. Barden has a commercial testimonial moment where he praises how it worked for him in his time of need. Blah blah blah, “If it could happen to me, it could happen to you!” crap.
That evening, she prepares dinner for her brother speaking in broken ass French. I mean, she pronounced monsignor as Mon Sewer! She received another phone call that she didn’t qualify for a job she applied for. The next day, she makes the decision to go to Shepard’s manor to partake in the game. She tells her brother that she is going out with high school friends, like any normal family member would do…keeping secrets. She gets picked up in their vehicle, not even a limousine! Cheap Uber bastards! While on the way there, she has flashbacks of conversations with Raleigh about him feeling sorry for all of the medical and financial burden being thrusted onto her abruptly. She, like a good sister doesn’t show any sort of sorrow and is willing to help at whatever cost.
Once she arrives at the manor, Iris is escorted into the main room and introduced to his son Julian and the other contestants: Lucas; Travis, a war veteran; Linda, a paralyzed elderly woman; Peter, a gambling addict; Amy; Conway, an alcoholic debtor (played by John Heard, who was best known for playing everybody’s favorite dad in Home Alone, Peter McCallister) ; and Cal.
We cut back to Dr. Barden, who is pensively drinking a cocktail who reminisces on the conversation with Shepard where Shepard thinks that Iris is a perfect candidate, but Barden is reluctant to allowing an innocent girl like Iris to partake in the upcoming events. Before being summoned for dinner, the group is asked to give all personal belongings, which is a red flag right there! The group all complies, and are then escorted to the game.
A steak and foie gras dinner is served for dinner. But Iris, a vegetarian, initially declines to eat it. Shepard then offers her $10,000 to compromise her principles; she reluctantly accepts his offer and eats the steak, not even with steak sauce. It was like a G-rated version of Fear Factor. When Shepard realizes Conway is a recovering alcoholic, which is expected since he raised a son that terrorized his home in order to keep the burglars away. he offers him $10,000 to drink a glass of wine. When Conway declines, Shepard offers him $50,000 to drink an entire decanter of Scotch, which Conway accepts.
After dinner ends, the game begins. Shepard reveals it to be a version of the party game “Would You Rather” in which players must choose between two options. He uses a simple example of asking one of the gentlemen if they would rather kiss Iris, or another male. Naturally, the guy said Iris. They weren’t forced to, but Linda assumed that they would have to kiss each other. Love her! Shepard continued to explain that the contestants had fifteen seconds to pick which one they would do, and if not on time they would be out. If they couldn’t complete the task, they would be out as well. Once the rules were fully explained, the group was given one last opportunity to leave without playing and in return would have no chance at a better life. Conway initially thought about leaving in his drunken stupor with his money, but then sat back down. I don’t know if it was based on desire to keep winning, or he was too drunk to stand. If it was me, I would drag my drunk ass out that door with 50,000 and make up the rest of my financial burdens with prostitution! But that’s just me. The group all decided to stay and play.
After Shepard’s butler, a former MI5 agent named Bevans, wheels in an electric shock machine, Conway attempts to leave but is shot dead, drunk and without the $50,000. Sad.
The remaining contestants learn how serious and deadly the game is and recognize they can only win the game if they are the last surviving player. The first round is played by having two contestants connected to the shock machine, and one person decides whether they should shock themselves or the other person. Cal is first to give the shock to either himself or Amy. After fifteen seconds, he shocks himself. Amy gets a rise out of this, which irritated me. Amy is given the choice to shock herself or poor old Linda. Without hesitation she shocks Linda. I hate her. After Linda takes a while to come back to her senses, she is given the choice to either shock herself or Peter. Naturally, she chose Peter. The contestants take turns making the difficult decision, and the round ends with no one eliminated with Shepard getting a complete rise out of their suffering.
It cuts to Dr. Barden grabbing a gun in his drawer and begins to drive away. It is revealed while Dr. Barden is driving that he had scars on his temples, indicating that he was a survivor of the game and endured the shock himself. The group is given a short break while they prepare their second round. They try to figure a way to escape. Julian walks in arrogantly as he messes with their heads. I normally don’t wish anything bad upon people. But since this is a movie character, I hope he gets Lou Gehrig’s! Travis steps in and tries to stand up for the group against Julian’s behavior. The butlers then wrap the area in plastic. Are they renovating? How exciting! Torture, AND décor! Dr. Barden finally arrives at the manor and sneaks in through a window.
The group reconvenes in the second round, where each contestant has 30 seconds to choose between stabbing someone in the thigh with an ice pick or whipping Travis (due to the bitchy pettiness of Julian telling his daddy like a five year old!) three times with a sjambok, which is an African whipping staff.
Travis takes the role of the hero, being a military veteran and having the ability to endure pain. Ultimately, Travis is severely injured after allowing Iris, Lucas, and even taking the whip on his own turn. Julian smugly observes like a little sissy…again, Lou Gehrig’s.
Peter, knowing he won’t survive another lashing, stabs Linda in the leg assuming she is paralyzed and wouldn’t feel it, but he hits a femoral artery and she dies. Amy is given the choice to stab any player or whip Travis. She expresses that she is here to win, and only one can survive. She chooses to shank Iris in the side, prison style.
I’m not a huge fan of her character, but I do understand her ruthlessness and understanding of their hostage situation, doing whatever she needs to do to win and survive. Travis dies soon after Cal has been given the choice to whip him, taking in Amy’s approach to the game, needing to eliminate everybody to win. And now we are down to five.
Lucas causes a distraction and everyone except Amy attempts to escape the room (teacher’s pet). Cal advances on Shepard with the sjambok as Lucas attacks the guards and Iris escapes. Naturally, Julian hides away from the violence like a wimp. After Shepard shoots and kills Cal, the others surrender. Shepard sends Bevans and Julian after Iris; Naturally, in any escape situation, Iris runs up the stairs instead of finding an exit on the main level or the basement. With a few minutes of cat and mouse, Iris eventually ends up in a lower level and tries to escape out a window. Julian finds her and attempts to rape her like the little bastard he is, but she stabs him with the ice pick. It’s not Lou Gehrig’s…but I will settle. Dr. Barden, who has had second thoughts about sending Iris to Shepard, breaks into the manor to save her. Before they can escape, Bevans kills Dr. Barden and escorts Iris back to the game by force. I guess we are now down to four!
The third round begins with each player having 30 seconds to choose to be submerged underwater in a barrel for two minutes, or an unknown task written on a card that is placed in front of them. Peter chooses a card using his gambling knowledge, which requires him to light a firecracker in his hand; when it explodes, it causes a heart attack, and he dies. That was definitely not a firecracker! It was a freakin’ stick of dynamite!
They even used everybody’s most useful tool, duct tape, to fasten it to his hand. I would rather stick with the duct tape to tuck back in my drag days, or even to shut Julian’s god forsaken loudmouth over taping dynamite to my hand! Lucas’ card forces him to slit open his own eyeball, or what I’m going to call “giving him eyeslashes!”.
He does so and survives. Iris chooses the barrel and survives (her unpicked card is revealed to have all her teeth extracted, which is still hot). During her submerging, she has a flashback of her brother talking about drowning which is very fitting for the occasion.
Amy then chooses her card and learns that she must be submerged underwater for four minutes, and she drowns without getting a proper breath. The ruthless one who was so committed to the game has lost valiantly. And now we are in the final round with our final two! How exciting!
With only Iris and Lucas in the final round, Iris is given the choice to either shoot and kill Lucas to win the game, or spare him, which would result in both walking away empty-handed. After some anticipation with Lucas talking about how they could leave together Iris abruptly shoots Lucas in the chest, killing him. Shepard crowns her the champion as the crowd goes wild. It was quite obnoxious that everybody was cheering while Iris breaks down naturally for killing a man.
Shepard gives her a bag full of money and explains that a donor has already been located for her brother and they will do the procedure within a week. I wonder if she gets to walk away with all the other guests’ belongings. I mean, might as well grab a wallet! There might be a credit card, or a subscription to the Jelly of the Month Club!
When Iris arrives home, she showers off the blood, probably a little shame for all she had to do. discovers Raleigh had committed suicide by overdosing on pills while she was out. She weeps at her dead brother’s side at the loss of her only remaining family and realizing that there was no point in her playing the game. That really bites!
So, I do like this movie. There is something to say about a situation that you are placed where you are at your lowest point, and you will need to do whatever it takes to better your life without selling your body on the street. The character differentiation was fairly solid, where there was a little bit of representation in every archetype. I will say that they could do a little bit better with those characters. I don’t know if I would personally do what they had to in order to survive. I just might do an OnlyFans page or something, and then commit to the game if that doesn’t work out…which it probably would. I mean…I’m no hottie!
Let’s hand out some awards!
The Haunted Hunk award will go to Travis. Nothing is hotter than a man that is willing to take a beating for complete strangers! Plus, he is into whipping, which might be a turn on for some members of the LGBT community!
The Killer Slay-aka best kill- will go to Travis as well. He most definitely had the most gruesome death. Being whipped twelve times to death. That is insane!
The Basic Beheading-aka worst kill- will go to Julian. It’s a little uncertain that he died in the movie. However, he was shanked in the thigh by Iris after attempting to rape her, and he was an arrogant prick with nothing to back up his cockiness. So, he is dead to me! Not only that, but they could’ve also made him dead to me better!
If you are looking for a more valid basic death, we will just go with Cal. He gets shot in the line of defense to try and help Iris escape. There you go…a more valid answer. I hope you are all happy!
Overall Rating 7/10 *******
I will say that by default that any movie with Brittany Snow will NEVER get a bad rating! Sue me. She can play a final girl very well! I think she can portray innocence and grit, which is are two of my favorite qualities in a final girl. She should be in more horror movies! I do like where the story as a whole went. I was sad for Iris to lose her brother after working hard to save him. I didn’t give the rating low for that reason. I did more for the portrayal of certain characters. I also thought that this movie was like “Diet Saw,” meaning it was a lighter torture porn version of what you would get out of Saw, and I like that. Sometimes I just can’t handle a fully caffeinated beverage.
And there you have it! Another beatdown complete! I will be posting these recaps as often as I can! I will be at least doing these bi-weekly. You may be lucky enough to get them weekly. It will just depend on the workload with my writing. Next post, I will be expressing my love and affection for all you readers and your commitment to my blog. I can’t give you all chocolates, but I can give you a beatdown of the very romantically horrific movie from 2001’s “Valentine”! If you don’t want to be spoiled…do your homework and watch it ahead of time, so that you follow along with my synopsis and understand the humor I attach to horror. If there is anything you would like for me to add in my beatdowns, have movie suggestions, or even have any feedback to give me, go to the “Contact” section of my website and shoot me an email.
Don’t take my comments or humor too seriously. After all…it’s just HORROR! And horror is sooo gay…right?
Until next time…keep slaying!