A lesson in minimalist film-making and operating on a super low budget but still having class, Anonymous 616 is a tense and smart horror. At least up until its disappointing finale. Yes, it drops the ball in the final quarter of the movie but up to that point, Anonymous 616 is very impressive.
Eric (David Abramsky) and his fiancée, Monica (Lena Roma) have invited another couple over for dinner, drinks and drugs. Jason (Daniel de Weldon) and Eric go way back and along with his girlfriend, Jenna (Jessica Boss) the night is one for reminiscing and having a good time.
The first quarter of the film has us get to know the foursome and briefly, Monica’s pre-teen daughter Emily (Bella Shepard). They share stories of where they’re at in their lives now and give us some backstory exposition with the main focus being on Jason and his army career.
As the party ramps up, Eric introduces a drug. One that he says will send this guests on a trip of a lifetime. Everyone is game and this is where things get really interesting.
Jason, feeling ill, throws up in the toilet and on his way back to the living room has his attention diverted by a computer in a separate room. A computer that is on and has someone looking to chat. Figuring it will be a distraction for a little while, Jason sits down and starts to converse with this unknown person. What begins as a bit of fun on his end turns into something far more terrifying as the other person reveals they know things about him that no-one should know.
As they talk through instant messaging Jason starts to head down a path that will destroy him and his loved ones. What follows is a violent, cruel and bloody second half that will leave many feeling uncomfortable and shocked. It can be tough to watch at times.
A lot of this is down to Daniel de Weldon’s performance, he is brilliant here. Dark and brooding but caring at first before transforming into a cruel and sadistic monster. Some may lament the character shift but would be choosing to ignore the signs posted earlier on and the combination of drugs in his system. Does he go too far? Absolutely but when the finale reveals the manipulation, it all makes sense.
The rest of the cast aren’t quite as good as him but do hold their own, each one fairly memorable. Although there is a strong argument that some of their decision making is a bit suspect. Forgivable though because of just how tense the movie is for a a hefty part of its run-time.
What isn’t so forgivable though is the ending. A ridiculous plot twist that blurs the lines far too much and comes across nonsensical. It’s also really frustrating as it didn’t need to be done this way. A better and more satisfying ending was there waiting to be told and would have capped off a really good flick.