Rafael "Parker!!" Jovine’s review published on Letterboxd:
Ok, well, I honestly don't know where to start. If I'm honest, this is a movie that I wasn't exactly looking forward to, even though I'm a big fan of Wan's work from his movies that have received all the praise in the world, to the ones that have divided the audience like a "Dead Silence". However the trailers were too underwhelming and I didn't hear anyone talking about it....
...until the movie came out. And suddenly, from being a film I was reluctant to see, I found myself looking forward to it, almost desperate to see this bizarre (almost like the movie) level of audience division. People either loved this film or hated it with such a passion. People labeled this as a masterpiece of horror, while others compared it to cancer and in fact some (I witnessed it myself) literally walked out of the theater. In short, I hadn't had such high expectations since "Avengers: Endgame".
And well, needless to say, everything that has been said is true. This is the most bizarre movie from the director (and we're talking about the guy who wrote and directed SAW), at the same time silly and absurd, brilliant, not at all scary, very violent and gory that I've seen in a while. Although I wouldn't call it a giallo film, there are a lot of conspicuous homages the director throws its way, from the camera work to the behavior of the killer to the very own clothing. And that ending lives up to the hype big time. For the first time in a long time, I found myself on the edge of my seat, wondering if the film had the balls to go in the direction it all pointed towards. And indeed it did. Many say Wan must have done a lot of coke or been under the influence, but let's not forget that this was all largely Akela Cooper's idea, so that apparently old lady must have f**ked up her pills for sleep or something, causing her to wander off. Also, those crash zooms and campiness, it's clear that Wan decided to borrow from Sam Raimi. And don't get me started on the parkour, that s**t was DOPE! Last but not least, I really dug most of the score, especially what sounded like Bishara's own rendition of "Where Is My Mind" by The Pixies.
As has been said, the performances aren't exactly the best. All of them act very odd, especially how they deliver their dialogue. Yet, it never reached the level of, say, The Happening and in the end, I didn't find it as troubling as others. Ray Chase is superb as the voice of our antagonist. It was something like a mixture of Leslie Carlson's Bill from Black Christmas and The Ring 's Samantha - apparently the actor works mainly as a voice actor, which is evident in his work here.
All in all, there's a lot I'd like to say, but I don't want to ruin any surprises for anyone reading this who hasn't seen the movie yet. What I can tell you is that it is worth every penny in the world, whether you end up on the side of those who hated this film, in the middle or in the hype train, this film is something that deserves to be experienced.