In his directorial debut, Jake Johnson takes the helm of the comedy thriller film, ‘Self Reliance.’ Johnson not only directs but also leads the cast, which includes Anna Kendrick, Natalie Morales, Mary Holland, Emily Hampshire, Christopher Lloyd, and Wayne Brady. The story unfolds in Los Angeles, where a disenchanted man finds himself entangled in a dark web reality television game with a tempting $1 million prize.
The catch: for 30 days, he must outsmart relentless hunters attempting to claim his life. Discovering a strategic loophole that allows attacks only when he’s alone, he endeavors to convince friends, family, and even strangers that the perilous game is real, compelling them to stay by his side 24/7. Here are 8 movies weaved from the same thread as ‘Self Reliance.’
8. Tag (2018)
‘Tag’ is a comedy film directed by Jeff Tomsic, featuring an ensemble cast including Ed Helms, Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, Jake Johnson, and Hannibal Buress. The plot centers around a group of friends who have been playing an elaborate, cross-country game of tag since childhood. The film explores their high-stakes and often hilarious attempts to tag each other, leading to unexpected twists and turns. Similar to ‘Self Reliance,’ ‘Tag’ combines humor with an unconventional premise, showcasing the lengths individuals will go to for entertainment and camaraderie, making it an engaging watch for those who enjoyed the comedic and thrilling elements of ‘Self Reliance.’
7. You’re Next (2011)
‘You’re Next’ is a horror thriller directed by Adam Wingard, featuring Sharni Vinson, AJ Bowen, and Joe Swanberg. The film follows a family reunion turned nightmare when masked attackers target the wealthy Davison family in their secluded vacation home. Sharni Vinson’s character, Erin, emerges as an unexpectedly formidable and resourceful heroine. In contrast to the comedic tone of ‘Self Reliance,’ ‘You’re Next’ delivers intense suspense and survival instincts, combining a home invasion thriller with surprising twists. It appeals to fans of ‘Self Reliance’ who enjoy gripping, edge-of-the-seat experiences within the horror genre.
6. The Game
‘The Game,’ directed by David Fincher, draws thematic parallels with ‘Self Reliance’ as both films explore psychological challenges and unconventional circumstances. In ‘The Game,’ Michael Douglas portrays Nicholas Van Orton, a wealthy banker thrust into a mysterious game by his brother, leading to a series of unpredictable and dangerous scenarios. This mirrors the premise of ‘Self Reliance,’ where a disillusioned man engages in a reality television game with unexpected rules. Both films captivate audiences with psychological twists, suspenseful storytelling, and characters grappling with unforeseen challenges, creating a shared sense of intrigue and suspense.
5. Ready or Not (2019)
‘Ready or Not,’ directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, shares a thematic synergy with ‘Self Reliance’ by seamlessly blending dark humor with suspenseful elements. The film revolves around a bride, played by Samara Weaving, whose wedding night turns perilous when she becomes the unwitting target of a deadly game orchestrated by her eccentric in-laws. Mirroring the unexpected twists in ‘Self Reliance,’ ‘Ready or Not’ keeps viewers engaged with its unpredictable narrative and dark comedic undertones. The film’s inventive approach to the thriller genre, coupled with a strong performance from Weaving, makes it an enticing choice for those who enjoyed the intriguing mix of comedy and suspense in ‘Self Reliance.’
4. The Cabin in the Woods (2011)
Directed by Drew Goddard, ‘The Cabin in the Woods’ is a horror comedy that challenges traditional genre tropes. The film features Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Fran Kranz, and Jesse Williams. The plot follows a group of friends who encounter unexpected horrors during a cabin getaway, gradually unraveling a mysterious conspiracy. Similarly, ‘Self Reliance’ engages viewers with a unique premise and unexpected twists. Both films share a penchant for subverting genre expectations, offering audiences a refreshing take on familiar themes. If you enjoyed the inventive narrative and dark humor of ‘The Cabin in the Woods,’ ‘Self Reliance’ promises a similarly engaging experience.
3. The Hunt (2020)
‘The Hunt,’ a satirical thriller directed by Craig Zobel, unfolds a controversial narrative where a group of strangers finds themselves being hunted for sport. Starring Betty Gilpin, Hilary Swank, and Ike Barinholtz, the film explores themes of societal division and survival. In contrast to ‘Self Reliance,’ ‘The Hunt’ delves into a politically charged game that transcends mere entertainment, providing a satirical commentary on social issues. Both films, however, share a common ground in their exploration of unconventional games that propel characters into intense situations, captivating audiences with unexpected twists and thought-provoking themes. If ‘Self Reliance’ intrigued you, ‘The Hunt’ offers a different yet equally compelling take on survival dynamics within a game-like scenario.
2. The Belko Experiment (2016)
Fans of ‘Self Reliance’ should venture into ‘The Belko Experiment’ for its shared theme of high-stakes survival within unconventional settings. Directed by Greg McLean, this horror thriller thrusts office employees into a twisted social experiment where they must kill each other to survive. The film’s intense atmosphere, unexpected twists, and exploration of human nature under extreme circumstances echo the tension and unpredictability found in ‘Self Reliance.’ With an ensemble cast including Tony Goldwyn and John Gallagher Jr., ‘The Belko Experiment’ delivers a gripping narrative that keeps audiences on the edge, offering a thrilling experience for those who crave the blend of suspense and psychological challenges.
1. Game Night (2018)
Anyone who enjoyed ‘Self Reliance’ will find ‘Game Night‘ irresistibly entertaining for its ingenious blend of humor and suspense. Directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the film crafts a thrilling narrative around a seemingly innocent game night that spirals into a chaotic and hilarious mystery. Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams lead an exceptional cast, delivering impeccable comedic timing amid unexpected plot twists. The movie’s sharp wit, clever storytelling, and dynamic ensemble make it a delightful ride. Just like ‘Self Reliance,’ ‘Game Night’ expertly navigates the balance between suspense and humor, ensuring a riveting experience that keeps viewers engaged from start to finish.