Why the fuck should you watch “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch”?
• You like videogames, watching movies at home and engaging in a movie in a different way.
• You have seen the series and just hearing the names Black Mirror and Charlie Brooker give you a brain boner.
• You have browsed Netflix archives for half an hour and just want to pick something already. Do it, I dare you! End the cycle of wasting time. And don't you fucking dare to pick something you have already seen!
• You think that drugs, violence, nonlinear narratives, and meta stuff make a good combination.
"Black Mirror: Bandersnatch” is Netflix's interactive narrative experiment that lets the viewer make path changing decisions along the story. So, you need to sacrifice your crotch scratching or beer holding hand for deciding what the protagonist Stefan – a 19-year-old socially awkward and psychologically conflicted video game programmer – does in the film. The story is set in the 1980s England that works as a stage for Stefan's trippy metajourney (oh, you will get this in the end, or at least in some of the ends). Sounds a little intriguing? It is and it is not (like a burger without meat).
Despite the rich references and Easter eggs that the movie nerds are currently decoding all over the internet, the story doesn't really have that mind penetrating effect that we are used to get from a Black Mirror series episode. It doesn't leave you thinking about the dark interplay between technological innovations, modern society and human nature. It doesn't make you feel fucking devastated and pessimistic about where we are heading as humans and as technologically evolved societies. It doesn't offer a thought-provoking narrative by presenting Stefan's destructive attempt to be an innovative video game programmer.
However, "Black Mirror: Bandersnatch” works well as a proof of concept. That, Netflix as platform could be a suitable place for this kinds of interactive experiences that have died off during the last decades due to the lack of proper channel or platform for presentation. It is interesting what Netflix learns from this experience, as they collect a lot of data of the users viewing habits, and what are the next steps they take. And actually this is the most shilling meta aspect of the movie.
Why the fuck you shouldn’t watch “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch”?
• You need your hands for other activities during movie viewing. If one is looking at your phone every 5 minutes for social media updates, please go away and never return to our blog. (It was a joke, please come back)
• You want to get a proper movie experience or at least a proper game experience. The film offers neither.
• Manipulating and getting manipulated makes you break stuff.