Cam (2018)

Name: Cam
Year: 2018
Country: USA
Director: Daniel Goldhaber
Main cast: Madeline Brewer, Patch Darragh, Melora Walters
Runtime: 94 minutes
Production company: Divide/Conquer, Blumhouse Productions, Gunpowder & Sky


Towards the end of the Sitges Film Festival there was scheduled for screening a modest movie that called our attention above the rest named Cam (2018). First of all, it was a Blumhouse production, that always adds some interest because those people tend to have good eyes for horror stories. And also, because it was advertised as a horror thriller written by a former sex worker, and that supposedly must add some credibility and first-hand insights of a world quite unknown for the global audience.

But my expectations to learn something from the underground world of sex working got frustrated fast, because Cam (2018) is basically a pretty hollow and accessible psychological thriller for all ages. No sordid experiences or dark sides of humankind here, except for the ones brought by the fictitious plot. Yes, of course, that host some mystery. But, again, it is fiction. No signs of real facts base here. Anyway, once the first conceptual disappointment is over, which I admit it is my fault for creating wrong expectations and shouldn’t be the movie’s fault, if we focus on analyzing the film Cam (2018) as itself, one can’t get rid of the feeling that everything transcurs quite hectic. In the movie, an ambitious camgirl wakes up one day to discover she’s been replaced on her show with an exact replica of herself. The main star of the movie, camgirl Alice, is present in almost all the takes of the film. That makes a little bit complicated for the audience to get a global picture of the situation; we try to empathize with her but we have no idea of what is going on. All we get to see and know as the audience is from the point of view of Alice, in her quest to get her identity back at any cost. A stolen identity in a way and with a technique that is never explained, so there is a sea of doubts and things hard to understand that never get resolved along the whole running time of Cam (2018).

A story like this probably would have been richer with a different approach. The filmmakers took a big risk trying to get the audience share the living hell of camgirl Alice, but they never had the skills to do so. Because the developing of the events are very chaotic. And the decisions taken by the main character at all times are weird and quite irresponsible. And, although I am not an expert worker or user of these sex cams services, I can imagine the camgirls have big rivalry between themselves and they constantly try to improve their show in order to win more followers in their channel, but I found unlikely many of the tricks used by the characters in the movie. It all felt too unsubstantial and little plausible. Constantly losing the audience’s interest.

If Cam (2018) has a strong feature is that the filmmakers chose a very competent actress to sustain the whole film on her back. Madeline Brewer’s performance as Alice, or Lola as is her internet persona called, was a good choice. She is sexy when it’s the time to play sexy. But she is also a good thriller hero when it’s the time to be her against the world in order to get her virtual identity back. That, with a simple but effective direction of co-writer and debutant feature film director Daniel Goldhaber, salvages this movie of being a bigger disaster.

Cam (2018) is not so much of a dark adult-oriented film as it could seem at the beginning. It is closer to a teenager targeted mild horror thriller than a title trying to break the ground. It’s more childish than sordid, it’s more chaotic than intense. But it is still a decent piece of entertainment. With perhaps an innovative plot dealing with the cam sexing world, but not strongly exploited enough. Maybe better luck next time.

RATE: 5/10


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