The suspenseful atmosphere, coupled with some excellent use of foreshadowing, makes for a thrilling viewing experience with a satisfying pay-off.
This review of the Paramount Plus film Significant Other does not contain spoilers.
Significant Other, jointly directed by Dan Berk and Robert Olsen, is a surprising sci-fi horror starring Maika Monroe (of It Follows fame) and Jake Lacy (known for The White Lotus). The movie is about a couple, Ruth and Harry, on a hiking trip who find themselves facing perils way beyond a failed proposal. During the first few minutes, we get a feel for who Ruth and Harry are as a couple. They’re clearly very much in love, yet Ruth’s anxiety seems to get in the way of their relationship. From the beginning, she’s uneasy about hiking deep in the woods, yet allows herself to be reassured by her boyfriend, who promises to keep her safe.
Set deep in the middle of thick woods, Significant Other does a great job of building suspense. There’s a constant tension between the two leads, every line of dialog seems to have a hidden meaning, yet the story is structured in such a way that it leaves enough room for ambiguity up until the big reveal. The suspenseful atmosphere, coupled with some excellent use of foreshadowing, makes for a thrilling viewing experience with a satisfying payoff.
The two leads do an excellent job as a young couple out of their depths. Jake Lacy is very convincing as a loving and supportive boyfriend with a discrete sinister undertone, while Maika Monroe’s portrayal of a young woman crippled by her anxiety has a certain depth to it.
This movie does a lot of things right. It’s set against the gorgeous Pacific Northwest backdrop. There are enough twists and turns in the narrative to keep the viewer at the edge of their seat for the entire runtime. The few bits of comedic release peppered in cut through the tension just enough to allow the viewer some breathing space. And the ending is as thrilling as it is terrifying. As the trailer doesn’t give much away, as long as you avoid spoilers, each reveal will come as a genuine surprise.
Significant Other is a nicely packed little horror flick. It moves away from conventional story-telling and delivers its twist neatly wrapped with a sci-fi ribbon. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, making it a fun, fresh, and exciting offering for this October.
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