Movie Review: Smile (2022)

New from Paramount.

Put on your brave face because Parker Finn’s supernatural movie Smile (B) is one of the year’s most terrifying horror films. The plot follows a therapist, gracefully played by Sosie Bacon, who appears to be losing her mind after witnessing a bizarre tragedy involving a troubled patient, portrayed so well by Caitlin Stasey that the audience is spoiled by amazing acting early in the story. The film effectively unpacks the effects of trauma while supplying a steady stream of creepy visuals, jump scares and menacing mysteries. Bacon’s lead performance is consistently engaging, as is Robin Weigert as a tightly wound psychiatrist. Finn keeps the tension high and the emotions raw but relies a bit too often on unnecessarily fancy camera angles and cellphone calls as deus ex machina. The director keeps his grip and grimace so taut for so long that the narrative hardly has any pearly white fight left in it for the final showdowns. This movie is undoubtedly a good time for horror lovers and a solid entry into the genre.

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