Do you need a reminder of just how vapid and soulless found footage horror can be? How dry that particular well is? How lazy, frustrating and unenjoyable it often is? Excellent, sit back and waste 80 minutes of your time with Camera Phone.
Having a low-budget is becoming a badge of honour for indie horror makers. Often trotted out as a reason for diminished quality. Well enough is enough. Having seen filmmakers work wonders with the tinniest amount, to see a movie like Camera Phone claim to be on par with them is offensive.
A mix of CCTV, phone footage and video cameras, Camera Phone opens with about 5 minutes of different characters talking to their YouTube audience about going to a private party. Each one is going to try and further their online careers but that night the police received a 911 call and almost everyone was found dead inside.
Mysterious right? At first, yes. Then as we try to watch the complied footage it quickly becomes clear that this is your bog-standard paranormal/demonic presence horror because of course, we don’t have enough of them.
Not enough to convince you of just how rubbish Camera Phone is? Well, every single annoying aspect of found-footage is here ready to remind you just how ‘done’ this style is. Take the CCTV moments that take place in a police interview room. The dialogue is mostly muffled nonsense and these scenes go on for ages.
If these scenes were the only problem is might not be so bad but the rest of the footage is horrid and most of the time, unwatchable. Add that to diabolical performances (the news reporter in particular) and we have one of the worst found-footage movies ever made. There is nothing to enjoy here, it’s 80 minutes of suffering. No build thanks to the early reveal that pretty much everyone died, even the pacing all over the place. It’s an absolute mess.
Scary? You have got to be joking.
Stay as far away from Camera Phone as you can and please, filmmakers… stop making found-footage movies!