#REVIEW: “COME PLAY”
Review by Justin Waldman for Mr. Will Wong
Jacob Chase invites you to Come Play as he does double duty as Writer and Director of this second Feature. It is also adapted from his Short Film Larry from 2017. While the Movie definitely borrows from some modern mythos, the performance from Oliver (Azhy Robertson) is truly remarkable. The well-crafted Script, wonderful direction, and engaging performances make this a worthy Halloween watch.
The Movie focuses on Oliver and his mother Sarah (Gillian Jacobs) as Oliver tries to adjust to a new school. He uses media devices as his preferred way of communication. Sarah is desperate for Oliver, who is living with Autism, to fit in. Unknowingly, she invites the same classmates who torment him, over for a sleepover and they steal his device, finding the book containing Larry. Thinking the book is just that, they read it more than Oliver originally did, unleashing Larry into the world as he comes to life through screens.
What makes Come Play work incredibly well is its timely and engaging Script. Come Play plays on some of the more modern mythos such as Slender Man and Momo, terrifying its characters into doing horrible things. Above a strong Script, Chase’s direction shows that he can reel himself in and keep his storytelling concise, and keeping the Plot moving at a perfect pace.
Robertson whom you might recall from last year’s Marriage Story, is excellent in the Lead Role with an uncomfortable demeanor and a knack for evoking sheer terror which elevates the Film. Jacobs also shines as Sarah, as a well-meaning mother and her performance takes full flight when things go haywire. As well, Byron (Winslow Fegley), Mateo (Jayden Marine) and Zach (Gavin MacIver-Wright) are all also fantastic as Oliver’s cruel classmates. Come Play delivers genuine jump-scares that will leave you shaken.
Universal Pictures Canada release COME PLAY Friday, October 30, 2020.