Film Review – We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (2021)

Title – We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (2021)

Director – Jane Schoenbrun (A Self-Induced Hallucination)

Cast – Anna Cobb, Michael J Rogers

Plot – Lonely internet obsessed teenager Casey (Cobb) takes up an online horror challenge known as the World’s Fair, a challenge that will have her questioning her very reality as she begins to lose track of who and what she is. 

“I can feel the forces of the Fair pulling you closer”

Review by Eddie on 08/08/2022

Produced by indie darling director David Lowery, Jane Schoenbrun’s internet themed drama We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (wrongly marketed as a straight up horror) is a film that portrays a scarily accurate example of the dangers of internet double lives and our global epidemic of tech obsessed culture but can’t make the most of its loaded and topical subject as it meanders along its 90 minute runtime without enough noteworthy material in between. 

Gaining attention at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival and other various showcases across the world, Fair has done well to become the talked about property it has in certain film circles and Schoenbrun works some wonders with her minuscule budget and tiny cast that is lead by a committed Anna Cobb as lonely teenager Casey, in what is her feature film debut. 

Taking part in a viral online horror game known as The World’s Fair, Casey’s lonely existence that consists of mainly hanging out in her room browsing the web, watching online videos and having Skype sessions with complete strangers is upturned by her participation in the World’s Fair game as her blurred reality makes her question what is and isn’t real as she tries to deal with the mental and potentially physical effects of taking part in the online craze. 

Watching the marketing materials for Fair one would think as viewer you may be in for some type of Paranormal Activity type event but Fair is a much slower and ponderous film than that type of genre offering and there’s barely a scare in sight here outside of the well known dangers that lurk on the web, present in the film with Casey’s uneasy and odd relationship with the much older and equally lonely JLB who has taken a keen interest in Casey’s journey through the after effects of the game shes started. 

One undeniable aspect of Fair that is as good as a film has ever been in the particular area is the capturing of the feeling of isolation that leads them to seek comfort many can find on the web and like many teenagers from around the world, Casey’s quest to feel a part of something bigger than her own isolated life and self-doubts leads her to be somebody she isn’t to try and gain attention or friends through trickery and in this instance Fair is a worthwhile warning about our modern culture and strange obsession with fads and crazes that are nothing short of dangerous. 

Final Say – 

A far from enjoyable film that lacks the character connection and narrative drive that would’ve made its bleakness more bearable, We’re All Going to the World’s Fair doesn’t work to the level one might’ve hoped for but has enough to say about our modern world to ensure it’s not a complete waste of valuable time. 

2 1/2 plush toys out of 5 

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