Festival circuit films may likely be low budget, but a good many of them turn out to be hidden gems. To gain film rights, some even cause bidding wars between movie companies. One such film, UNFRIENDED, appeared at Fantasia Fest back in 2014 to positive reviews. The movie was picked up by Univerasal/Blumhouse and shown again at SXSW before receiving a general release in 2015.
In 2018, a follow up film, UNFRIENDED: DARK WEB, was released to fairly like-minded reviews. Unlike the first, however, this one removed the supernatural twist and went “real world.” The original made huge money for its smaller budget, yet the second oddly didn’t do as well, probably because of Blumhouse’s new release model. This rollout includes showing smaller productions on less screens as well as giving them a minor marketing campaign. The film however did make a profit.
Both movies, with their interesting computer screen presentation, made each more than just a found-footage film. It also gave them an interesting gimmick that mirrored real world social media. Dark Discussions takes a look at this franchise and give their thoughts on the movies.