- Good premise with psychological themes
- Natalie Dormer's performance
- Great setting with loads of potential
|One very great setting and premise...|
- Overreliance on predictable jump scares
- Often weird timing of scares
- Overall, not really all that scary
- Very bland, straightforward storyline with few to no highlights
- Rushed, sloppily put together final act
|...gone to waste due to a lazily bland script.|
- The ghosts haunting Natalie Dormer in her dreams even before she even got to the forest.
|Ghost horror movie clichee no. 384028278948.|
Even though The Forest works with a pretty promising premise and very spooky real-life setting to boot, this Natalie Dormer starring ghost horror flick is sadly another "January dud" that fails to live up to its potential.
The Forest works with the real-life setting of the Japanese Aokigahara Forest, which is known for centuries as a dark place where numerous suicides have been comitted over the years. With this in hand, instead of carefully working with the already creepy backstory of the forest and blending it together with the movie's own storyline, The Forest feels just way too overly bland and clicheed to make use of the premise's great potential.
Instead, the movie relies very heavily on uninspired jump scare after jump scare that aren't necessarily entirely uneffective but come off as incredibly predictable, clicheed and by-the-book.
Thus, not one single moment in The Forest feels unique but more of an uninspired copy of yet another ghost horror movie that came before it. With that said, The Forest feels more like a very straightforward, predictable and uneventful series of jump scares of people with pale make-up and little else, seemingly letting its scares move the plot forward and not the story.
And considering that the movie had Natalie Dormer's good performance as well as some psychological themes going for it, it's just sad that The Forest just falls behind in most other aspects by clinging so desperately onto the usual run-off-the-mill ghost story affair.
Fans of ghost horror movies who don't get tired of watching the same scares done over and over again could give it a watch, but everybody else should just skip it or watch Blair Witch Project instead.
Final Verdict: 3 out of 10