10th Dec2021

‘Death Link’ VOD Review

by Phil Wheat

Stars: Elise Luthman, Jessica Belkin, Riker Lynch, Matt Rife, Alli Simpson | Written by Dustin Dinoff, Duncan Forster | Directed by David Lipper

Death Link follows a group of friends who all hang out own a social media platform called Instatok – how original – (and seemingly are ONLY friends because of it) who are stalked by a mysterious killer. And with good reason, this group of frie3nds are privileged high school snobs who chase clout and fame via social media, acting as if it’s the be all and end all of life. Hell, when one is taken to the police station after her phone is found at the scene of a murder she goes all “Karen” on the policeman taking her in… That’s how privileged and stuck up they are. Which means that for the majority of Death Link‘s running time you kind of hope our killer succeeds in wiping the lot of them out. The world in which these kids live would probably be better off without their self-centred, me, me, me behaviour!

However Death Link sets up the perfect patsy for the films suspect in Wayne Hewitt, an escape mental patient who, as we see in the prologue, was tormented – well I say tormented but its a LITERAL hate crime – by the guys in this group of friends live on the internet and then tried to commit suicide (told you these teens feel like they deserved everything they get). So far so cliched.

In fact Death Link follows every trope, stereotype and cliche in the book. From the aforementioned escaped mental patient to the former friends divided by ones growing popularity in school (and in this case also because of the ridiculously monikered Instatok app) all by way of a “is it a prank or not?” Internet video… I don’t think the script, by co-writers Dustin Dinoff and Duncan Forster has an original bone in its body. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, after all most films tend to follow certain formulas etc., but when its done as by-the-book as it is here, you can’t help but wonder why anyone bothered? Just adding your own, however small touch would have increased the fun factor of this film immensely. People talk abut “paint by numbers” filmmaking and this is a clear example of that.

In fact so cliched is Death Link that if you don’t know EXACTLY who this films killer is in within the first five minutes then you obviously haven’t watched enough horror movies. I joke of course but then why shouldn’t I? Especially when Death Link beats the audience around the head with exactly who the killer is a further thirty minutes in. TWICE! I could spoil things – and I will to save you watching this – just think Wes Craven’s Scream and even moreso it’s sequels…

On the plus side, at least Dustin Dinoff and Duncan Forster get the vacuous “influencer” speak and conversations down pat. But then who wants to listen to that kind of empty-headed talk throughout an ENTIRE film? I certainly don’t. And when these teens find themselves trapped in a corner, scared that their so-called perfect lives are falling apart, their two-faced, bitchy, nature really comes to the fore. Which is probably the most believable part of this entire movie!

If you like your horror with a social media slant there are better choices out there than Death Link; b ut then if you’ve seen them all you may as well add this to your viewing experience too. You might enjoy the [cliched] ending of the film as much as I did; a fact that surprised me completely.

**½ 2.5/5

Death Link is available to watch on Amazon Prime now.


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