Eight friends at a dinner party experience a troubling chain of events due to the malevolent influence of a passing comet.
Release Year: 2013 | Genre: Sci-Fi Horror | Runtime: 1 hr 29 mins | Directed by: James Ward Byrkit | Unstarred Review | Source: Amazon Prime
If I had to name only two things that absolutely break my brain in movies and books, they’d have to be time travel and anything involving connecting multiverses. So it’s probably safe to say that Coherence broke my brain just a little.
Coherence starts off slow, with a bit of an awkward dinner party amongst friends who maybe have some uncomfortable history together. But there’s a twist to this dinner party – a comet is passing close to Earth, disrupting cell signals, breaking phones and knocking out power and internet. Once the power is out, things begin to take a turn for the sinister…
This film has a really interesting aesthetic. It’s obviously cheaply shot (IMDb tells me the budget on this one was $50K) but not in a distracting way. Yes, things get a bit shaky at times and there’s a yellow tone to everything, but it adds to the intimacy of the setting and fits the mood of the dinner guests.
The acting is also quite good. The tension of the relationships between the characters was palpable, and their reactions as the situation evolved felt, for the most part, realistic. Things get a little less believable as the film goes on, but in a way that felt fitting for the events taking place.
Unfortunately though, despite all the positive elements and a genuinely tense, stressful first 50ish minutes, Coherence lost me in the back half. I didn’t mind too much when the plot started getting into theoretical physics and science talk, but once the multiverse element really ramps up, the tension fades. I felt I was spending way too much time trying to keep a grasp on who was where and why to really hold onto the stress and discomfort of the first half. The actions of the characters became much more erratic, and it’s often a frenzy of yelling and camera cuts that were disorienting and led me to disconnect a bit from the film.
Coherence is an interesting concept executed reasonably competently, but ultimately, it just wasn’t quite coherent enough for my tastes.
Sam joined the Coolthulhu Crew in December 2018. She reviews science fiction and horror for the site and is our resident Canadian.
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