The summary of this movie sounded interesting, not to mention it was listed as a "horror, sci-fi" aka right up my ally, so I decided to give it a whirl. All I have to say is: at least it was only an hour and a half long.
I will say the main 2 protagonists did a decent job in acting. There was something very endearing about the main boy and I didn't mind the main girl as well. With that being said....
I think this movie was to teach a lesson of not lying and being true to yourself? Making the most out of this life and not being mean to others? Although they went about conveying that in all the wrong ways or a total lack there of I should say.
They needed to build up to these kids and give more reasons as to why they were actually transported. The kid lying or fibbing to his substitute teacher and the girl having an obvious crush on the main boy, but standing by his bully, did not mean (in my opinion) they needed to be transported to this other dimension to learn a lesson. You could tell they were both good kids, just teenagers. I've seen a lot worse in my day. It would have made a lot more sense if the bully had been sent right away and came back learning a lesson.
I think they also needed a more cut and dry difference between the two dimensions. In one the main kid has lost his dad, but is overall a good, normal kid...kind of a dork with not a lot of friends. In the other dimension, he is a...heavy metal lover/stabs kids in the neck with a pencil? (which would be very unlikely to actually kill someone with btw) Other than his satanic like room, not seeing a drastic difference there, other than his dad being alive of course. Even that fact, the dad being alive, really didn't have an impact and was just glossed over. Pointless. The main girl? Well we don't know much about her to begin with, but in the other dimension, her family has nicey-nice pictures everywhere, but when she goes upstairs her sister tries to kill her. But she says in the real world, they don't get along at all either. Once again, not seeing a huge difference there, not like we were given a lot to work with in the first place.
The party that is going on in the real world? Pointless. Other than to get the kids into the closet. Cops called with a whole bunch of 16-17 year old kids and he sees no furniture or adults and red dixie cups smashed on the floor. But, decides to leave because there's "no sign of drinking or drugs", right. I wish this cop was around when I use to party in high school/college. The dragging out of the parents showing up and these kids not letting anyone in was just downright dumb and unnecessary. Until morning I might add, the main kids mom dropped him off while it was still light outside. So these kids, with one keg, sit in this house for 12 hours? THIS WOULD NEVER HAPPEN. IN ANY DIMENSION.
The gateway in general was boring. A closet? A closet in some teenagers house? No back up or explaining as to why this is the location. Also, the playing cards with all the moms. Completely pointless and focused on way to much. Once again, P.O.I.N.T.L.E.S.S.
Gary Cole? Is he the gatekeeper? Why? His only purpose in the movie was to get them out of the other dimension and tell the main kid to go to class in the real world. Rightttt.
The other dimension and people in general were all lacking a reason and drive. Everyone was mad and wanted the main kid caught for killing the bully, but then turns out the bully is alive and well and, well...still bullying! Along with everyone else. Missing what their objective was or what they really functioned off of, meanness? If so, shouldn't they have loved the fact he supposedly murdered someone?
It's nice to see writers think outside the box and not make a total cliche movie, but I think there was some major lacking in creating a full, rounded, well thought out movie. Should have focused on more aspects and cut a lot of other parts out. This movie was more a long the line of an "Are you Afraid of the Dark" episode, but not as good lol.