Dismissed is an intense horror thriller out on Netflix now. Starring an incredibly dark and impressive Dylan Sprouse in a role, he could easily make a trademark character out of.
We’re not exactly the kind of people who will complain about elements that make a story more horror-filled. However, it is annoying when the more stereotypical plot twists come along.
Basically, Dismissed is dark and twisted enough without the added horror. Dylan Sprouse portrays a character so warped and jaded that simply looking at his face is all the horror you could dream of.
You can watch the trailer for Dismissed right here or continue reading our review below.
Dylan Sprouse as a horror icon
Dismissed works almost entirely because Dylan Sprouse is so intense in his portrayal of Lucas Ward. With just a split second he can change from a charming smile to a psychotic one. His eyes remain pretty much dead through all the motions and it is perfect.
Dylan Sprouse can be a real charmer, but damn, how I hope he will go down the horror rabbit hole. He could easily portray iconic characters in horror movies for the rest of his career, if he wished.
For the record, the rest of the cast works absolutely beautifully as well. But you get sucked in by the madness of Sprouse’s character. He is so easy to read and yet, it is very easy to see how he can fool everyone.
Also, Chris Bauer (True Blood) is absolutely perfect in his portrayal of Lucas’ father. Not an easy character to play, but one I really wish we had seen more of. Still, sometimes less is more and what we got was spot-on.
The art of restraint
Sometimes, you watch a movie and you really wish the story could end. Basically, you want them to quit while they’re ahead, but you know they won’t.
Everything is awful and the bad guy looks like he’s winning, but you know the filmmakers need to take it just that one step too far. Unfortunately, this is the downfall of Dismissed as well.
It’s now terrible, but it does make for a lesser movie than what might have been.
Dismissed has so much going for it, but the lead character just can’t stop himself. The actual lead character is the teacher, Mr. Butler, played by Kent Osborne. He doesn’t want to give in to Lucas Ward’s demands and is punished in quite a few ways.
If the movie had ended just 5-10 minutes earlier it would simply have been a stronger story for me. But hey, to each their own.
Dismissed is worth your time
Brian McAuley wrote the script for Dismissed and he’s no stranger to the world of horror. Well, even though he did also write an episode of Fuller House. But anyway, he also wrote part of the horror anthology Patient Seven so he’s onboard with the horror crazies.
As a whole, I really liked the story, so hopefully, we’ll get plenty more from his horror mind in the future. Or even thrillers, since Dismissed is more thriller than horror, but certainly has elements of both.
Benjamin Arfmann directed Dismissed and this marks his feature film debut. He’s done short films and TV-series in the past, but this is his first feature film. As such, I would certainly be happy with the result if I were him. Especially the fact that the movie did have a pretty tight runtime.
Dismissed is available on Netflix in the US now!
Director: Benjamin Arfmann
Writer: Brian McAuley
Cast: Dylan Sprouse, Randall Park, Chris Bauer, Brooke Dillman, Rae Gray
An idealistic, straight-edge teacher is drawn down a horrid rabbit hole by an honors student when he gives him a B+ on a paper.