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Choose or Die | 2022 | TV-MA | – 1.8.10

content-ratingsWhy is “Choose or Die” rated TV-MA? The TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board rating indicates that “this program is specifically designed to be viewed by adults and therefore may be unsuitable for children under 17.” The Kids-In-Mind.com evaluation includes a potential teen pregnancy, a few sexual references, many scenes of people being injured or killed and others being forced to make choices to save them or make them suffer with a lot of blood and gore seen, and nearly 70 F-words and other strong language. Read our parents’ guide below for details on sexual content, violence & strong language.


A young man (Asa Butterfield) and a young woman (Iola Evans) discover a computer game from the 1980s that takes over their lives, forcing them to choose between making someone else suffer, or to die themselves. After nightmarish suffering by many people, the young woman confronts the controller of the game (Eddie Marsan) for a showdown. Also with Angela Griffin, Joe Bollard and the voice of Robert Englund. Directed by Toby Meakins. [Running Time: 1:25]

Choose or Die SEX/NUDITY 1

 – A teen girl says she is pregnant (we see no outward evidence). A man in an empty apartment smells a woman’s sleeveless shirt for several seconds.
 A song on a radio contains the lyrics, “I gave my body to Adam.” A man says a computer program is like a wet dream.

Choose or Die VIOLENCE/GORE 8

 – This film contains ominous music throughout and is set mostly in dark or dimly lit buildings and rooms with computer, laptop, and smartphone screens displaying neon-green symbols and sentences that light up an entire room, accompanied by eerie voices, static and screeching electronics; a voice accompanying the words says, “Pain, fear, suffering, trauma, death,” several times.
 A teen boy sits at a table with a woman whose mouth and chin are covered with white plaster, and an older man; the boy’s face is painted like a clown, and a paper image of an eye covers his own eye; he shudders and grunts continually as a young woman enters and the older man asks her to sit down whereupon they argue and the young woman’s cell phone beeps and displays a demand that a life-or-death game be played; the already seated woman slashes a knife at the man, he grabs her arm and twists it as she grunts, the young woman grabs the knife and as the older man lunges, she slashes his temple and cheek (we see some blood), she cuts her own hand, but the man bleeds, and he beats his head on a table and the young woman falls grunting; the boy runs away and returns with a pistol he points it at the man, fires three times and misses, the man slashes him in the face with the knife (a bloody slash is shown), and the first woman takes the gun and shoots the young woman and the man screams and falls, bleeding from the face. A man knocks a woman down, takes a gun from her, points it at his own temple (the gun is empty), he sticks a knife into his face and slashes his own throat; a young woman bleeds from the face and throat and falls into a swimming pool, hits bottom, and lies motionless with eyes open and blood on her face and throat; the man beside the pool gags and sputters, spewing a lot of water from his nose and mouth, and falls dead with his eyes open as a laptop screen flashes, “You are dead. Sorry. Game Over.”
 A young woman in a cafe turns on her computer and text appears, telling her to make choices and when she speaks to a server, the screen types her words; the server drops heavy glass tumblers to the floor and they crash and shatter and she slowly eats two shards of glass, cutting her mouth and tongue and saying, “It hurts” and that she can’t stop; the young woman knocks a man away, grabs the server and then wakes up at home, gasping.
 A computer boots itself up and tells a young man and a young woman to make choices; the man begins vomiting many yards of VHS tape for several seconds and the woman chooses a fast-forward button on her computer screen causing the man to expel more and more tape more quickly and finally falls to the floor (gunk and blood cover his face and mouth as he dies with eyes open). An eerie scene in a darkened room shows a woman holding a large carving knife as a teen boy is seen with blood pouring out of his mouth and covering his chin and chest; we hear that a computer program made the woman cut out his tongue.
 A man in an empty bedroom that belongs to a hospitalized woman smells her sleeveless shirt for several seconds (implying sexual abuse of the woman, who’s a drug addict); the man screams as an unseen force pushes him to the kitchen where many syringes are shown needle-up in a sink, as the man is forced to slam his face into the needles; the camera cuts to two police officers entering the area and one officer gags, wretches, bends over (no vomit can be seen), and we see the man sitting dead in a corner with eyes open, and syringes sticking out of his forehead, face and eye (blood has dripped on his face and mouth).
 A young man and a young woman break into an abandoned warehouse where they find a VHS tape, play it on a VCR and we see a man saying that he created a computer game, based on legendary symbols of suffering in a curse; he has another man locked into a small windowless room with a computer and keyboard and uses the game to force the second man to make choices, he cuts himself on the arm with a pocket knife (we see blood flow) and the locked up man screams, bites his own arm, and screams again; the first man’s arm heals immediately while the second man keeps screaming and biting his arm.
 A computer powers up and tells a young man and a young woman to choose between red and blue doors that suddenly glow and the door they choose slides open; they hear many mumbling voices, they walk through dark hallways as a figure scurries across their path and the young woman calls out to it; they enter a foggy room where they see a swimming pool, the young man falls and a young boy seems to lie beside him on the floor as a computer tells the young woman to choose which person to save; she pulls one of the two away, but the other lunges and strangles the young woman on the floor until she gets on top of him and starts strangling him and he disappears.
 A computer boots itself up on a high-rise floor where a young woman is mopping; a woman’s voice shouts from the young woman’s cellphone and from the flat-screen, where a maze appears that contains a female stick figure and a giant rat chasing her; the young woman and the woman scream for several seconds while a male voice repeats for the rat to “get the meat”; the rat catches up to the stick figure and it disappears and the young woman smashes the computer screen to the floor and her supervisor fires her.
 A camera cuts to a hospital room where a woman lies under covers and has many cuts and scrapes on her face. A young woman goes home to find debris, along with many scratches as if from claws on walls and doors, and the word “meat” carved into the wallpaper. A scene shows an injured young woman whose wounds are now suddenly and completely healed and later shows the young woman with her injured mother, whose face suddenly heals as well. A young woman destroys a computer game cassette.
 A teen boy and a woman argue, scream, and curse for several seconds. A police officer tells a young woman’s mother that the young woman was at “the scene of the crime” and will need to be interviewed later. A young man and a young woman argue several times. A young woman argues with an older man twice. A young woman answers her phone and a male voice asks her who will suffer next; she answers, “Only people who deserve it.”

Choose or Die LANGUAGE 10

 – About 67 F-words and its derivatives, 2 sexual references, 7 scatological terms, 1 anatomical term, 5 mild obscenities, name-calling (loser, lazy, idiot, stupid, weirdo, creepy), 1 religious profanity (GD), 8 religious exclamations (e.g. oh my God, God, Jesus Christ, Amen). | profanity glossary |

Choose or Die SUBSTANCE USE

 – A man implies that a young woman’s mother is an addict and offers a young woman a small bag of powdered drugs (she declines), and two prescription bottles with unreadable labels are shown on a table as a young woman opens one bottle and gives two tablets to her mother (she does not swallow them). A man sips from a beer bottle and its label changes to say “Fooled You,” and a wine bottle and a glass of wine are seen beside him. A man smokes a cigarette, and a woman smokes a cigarette.

Choose or Die DISCUSSION TOPICS

 – Technology, computer gaming, legendary curses, making others suffer, poverty, drug addiction, violence, bloodshed, death, loss, poverty, rap music, problem-solving, determination, healing, happiness.

Choose or Die MESSAGE

 – Computer gaming can lead to danger.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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