The Gallows – Movie Review by Frances Winston
Directed by: Travis Cluff, Chris Lofing
Starring: Reese Mishler, Pfeifer Brown, Ryan Shoos, Cassidy Gifford
In cinemas July 17th
Yet another found footage style movie this sees four teenagers trapped in a high school 20 years after a student was accidently hung while performing in the play The Gallows. With the school planning to stage a revival they break in to destroy the set so that leading man Reese (Mishler) can avoid appearing in the show. However, they find themselves locked in with no phone signal and it quickly becomes apparent that something strange is at work.
So far so standard. And indeed there is a lot about this that is formulaic. This has been widely panned and indeed I have on numerous occasions stated that I am not a fan of the found footage format which has become quite jaded at this stage. That said this doesn’t deserve all the harsh criticism it has received. While it is pretty much movie making by numbers there are some clever moments and jump out of your seat scenes not all of which you see coming. There is also a twist at the end that is not necessarily what you would expect.
Yes you can see some scenes coming a mile away and yes, as is always the case with these films, there is often confusion about exactly who is supposed to be holding the camera which detracts somewhat from the story as you try to figure it out. Despite this though The Gallows is a pretty engaging watch. Coming in at a mere 81 minutes it never hits the point where it drags and it should leave you suitably creeped out if nothing else.
These kind of movies can never compete with the big budget blockbusters and they don’t try to but on a $100 million budget this has turned a not insignificant profit so far so there is clearly still a market for this kind of schlock horror flick. As a fan of the horror genre I found this engaging enough. Not a two time watch but entertaining nonetheless and I wouldn’t scratch it off your “to see” list just because a few critics went full throttle with their venom.