Friday, July 24, 2015

Movie Review: The Gallows

So, I am a filmmaker, as most of you know.  Because I am a filmmaker, I ingest many films and TV.  Most of the time the films I watch are good and sometimes they are passable.  On occasion I will see a film because of Hype or fanfare.  I am usually not disappointed in those films but that does not mean I actually liked them or would have chosen to see the pop culture laden and obviously manufactured films on my own accord.  One of my most read reviews is of American Sniper, a movie I would never have chosen to see on my own (I also worked for the movie theater at the time so I didn't have to pay to see it, another bonus).  All this being said, I chose to watch "The Gallows".

"The Gallows" is a film about a jerk jock, Ryan (Ryan Shoos, he used his real name) and his friend Reese (Reese Mishler) who are forced to take Drama in high school.  The class has decided to remake the play "The Gallows" even tough the last time it was performed the lead actor was accidentally hanged.  The lead actress Pfeifer (Pfeifer Brown) is focused on the play and wants to perform it again for unknown reasons never revealed in the movie.  The film is recorded "first person " by Ryan with a digital camera and is constantly filming everything (why?  No Idea).  Reese is infatuated by Pfeifer  and always gets tongue tied when he is next to her.  To help his friend, Ryan enlists his girlfriend Cassidy (Cassidy Gifford) to take Reese to the school's theater and destroy the set so the play cannot go on, relieving them all from having to endure the play.  

I wanted to see it because of the trailer.  It seemed like it might be an interesting take on the "found footage" genre.

I made a special trip to watch this film.  Even though my admission price was only $4.35 I dare say it was a waste of money.  It is the traditional shakey camera and poor acting that we have come to expect from a film such as this.  As a filmmaker, I know they spent very little time filming it.  It is easy to see and hear.

"The Gallows" is the same old cruddy, cheaply made horror movie written without much thought to the script.  I wouldn't be surprised if this was only two versions away from he rough draft or even written/re-written the day of the shoot.  It wasn't scary (other than one time when I was falling asleep and a loud noise woke me up) and the scenes were predictable.

The ending, however, might have had a better story than the movie itself.  (Spoiler Alert)  In the end the lead actress is having her hair brushed by her mother in a shrine dedicated to the actor from the play put on so many years ago.  Irony ensues as we see that her mother was the lead actress, scarred for life from the death during the original play.  I would be more interested to see a movie about the conspiracy they perpetuated with the ghost in order to kill the "new" leads of the play than this predictable and poorly made film.