Buckle your seatbelts and say a prayer: Dawn’s rideshare from Hell.

Dawn - Courtesy October Coast
Dawn - Courtesy October Coast /

An unsuspecting couple fears for their lives after accepting a rideshare from an unhinged driver with a lust for murder and a twisted sense of justice. In Dawn, from director Nicholas Ryan, Jackie Moore (Westworld, Pernicious) leads an ensemble cast as the deranged and unnerving Dawn, who hosts a dark web show “Dawn’s Dead,” and teaches her followers the ins and outs of murder and torture. A recently married couple, Anna (Sarah French) and Oliver (Jared Cohn) become Dawn’s next crop of victims after ignoring all the warning signs and getting into her car. This is why you always check the license plate and car color on the rideshare app first!

Their driver seems pleasant enough, though very unnerving with her wide unblinking eyes. Still, Anna becomes increasingly nervous and Oliver loses his cool when she continuously misses their destination and refuses to pull over. It’s not long before the terrifying driver forces the couple to engage in a brutal game of survival to test their will to live and their perceptions of being “good people.” Dawn’s not quite on par with Jigsaw, but give her a few years and a couple of sequels; she’s going far in the dark world of death-dealing.

rideshare from Hell: Anna points a gun at Dawn.
Dawn – Courtesy October Coast /

At an hour and 17 minutes, the film makes for quick viewing. Sometimes the dialogue is wooden and I was left with several questions by the film’s conclusion, but at the end of the day, I always ask myself: was I entertained? The answer is a resounding: yes. Moore is the true MVP of the film and does a fantastic job of conveying Dawn’s increased agitation and aptitude for violence. I felt very unsettled over the brief periods where the façade falls away and she is left staring emotionless at the camera. She doesn’t kill for pure sport. Her victims lack a certain self-awareness that Dawn has and few people do.

Dawn sees the truth: none of us are as good as we say we are or think we are. We live in an unjust world with centuries-old systems designed to make rich people flourish and poor people suffer. We call ourselves “good people” while turning a blind eye to the plights of others, buying products we know were created under horrible circumstances, and being bystanders to, and active participants in dehumanizing acts of cruelty against the poor and marginalized. Dawn doesn’t try to fight these systems herself, she’s just aware of her own apathy and hates when other people aren’t honest about themselves or their roles in these systems. Dawn’s victims are under the illusion that they are good people, but then in moments of terror and in acts of self-preservation, their secrets come out and we see behind the mask.

Dawn is a fun rideshare thriller with plenty of kills, a few surprising cameos, an eerie and neon atmosphere, and a fantastic lead performance from Moore. I love that a female killer gets her chance to shine in the film. There are a few ideas and plot points I wanted to see more of, but I was content by the film’s conclusion (even though I had some questions) that the hour and 17 minutes were well-spent. Getting into a rideshare is an act of vulnerability…what if your driver is a homicidal maniac?

Dawn releases in North America on August 8th.

Next. The Curse of Bridge Hollow and fun Halloween shows on Netflix. dark

Do you think Dawn sounds like a film you would enjoy? Do you plan to stream it when it becomes available? Let us know what you think in the comments section.