Movie Review: WISH UPON

WISH UPON (2017) - Cover Photo


Jonathan Shannon (Ryan Phillippe) gives his 17-year-old daughter Clare (Joey King) an old music box that promises to grant its owner seven wishes. Skeptical at first, Clare becomes seduced by its dark powers when her life starts to radically improve with each wish. Everything seems perfect until she realizes that every wish she makes causes the people who are closest to her to die in violent and elaborate ways.

Director: John R. Leonetti
Writers: Barbara Marshall
Stars: Joey King, Ryan Phillippe, Ki Hong Lee

Rating: 7 / 10 Stars

Rating: 7 out of 10.

REVIEW – Have you ever had a dinner at an expensive place and the food was good but you felt for the money, you should have had better food? This is how I felt watching John R. Leonetti;s Wish Upon. I felt the film was fine, but in the end I was really hoping for more out of this material. This film has such an identity crisis, one minute it wants to be an effective thriller, the next minute a horror film and then finally a dark comedy of sorts. I would have been fine with this juggling act if the story was better. This film wants the viewer to feel it is a retelling of sorts to the novel The Monkey’s Paw. I feel that the elements are in place, but this film tries to pervert the material in this direction of Mean Girls. We have the typical teen named Clare who is sick of her place in high school as this nobody. It seems that Clare’s father is a scrap collector. One day he brings home this odd music box with chinese stuff all over it. Clare decides one day after being picked on by the school bully to clutch the box and wishes harm on this bully.

The next day, the girl is stricken with this virus that eats away at her flesh. This film decides to give us some kind of moral lesson along the way of selfishness vs social perception. It just feels that this film wanted to be something different and it was not sure how to do it. I did not mind this film, it was a mind numbing experience but it was not boring. This film does falter from pacing issues, and it is very apparent in the second act of the film how much they do hinder this film. The performances really did try hard to convey the material, but it just felt at times that they were not fully committed to the material. It is very intoxicating when you watch a film and you feel the energy just resonate. This film felt like a whimper at times, like a bunch of actors doing some acting. Like I started out early saying, I did not mind this film but I expected so much more out of it. I can honestly say this film would be my horror pick of Tuesday to pick up, but then again the choices are so slim that any other horror film could have contended for the slot.

Joey King, Sydney Park, and Shannon Purser in WISH UPON (2017)

WISH UPON | Official Trailer:

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