Friday, July 10, 2015

The Gallows


Jason Blum must be stopped. 

If you're not familiar with the name, I'm not referring to a character in a horror franchise.  Errr, actually I guess I kind of am.  Blum is infamous for producing microbudget horror films that strangely are distributed in wide theatrical release, rather than straight to VOD where many of them belong.  OK, yes, I freely admit that since 2007 Blumhouse Productions has created many great horror films, including Paranormal Activity, Insidious, Dark Skies, The Purge, and a personal favorite that no one saw called 13 Sins.  And for the record, they also produced Whiplash, which was an astounding achievement.  So with all of that said, why am I angry with Blum?  Well because instead of investing the money from the hugely successful franchises like Paranormal Activity to adequately market the best ones that, sadly, didn't reach an audience (like 13 Sins which only made $13,809 in its 45 theater release thanks to terrible marketing, but really could become an amazing franchise), or creating new ones that are equally original, edgy, and ground breaking, they have become unbelievably lazy and safe.  Jessabelle, Area 51, and now The Gallows are among the laziest horror films I can recall.  I don't know about you, but I am so tired of found footage from hand held cameras, pretty uninteresting teens, angry ghosts that can't get over their own death, and cheap scares punched up by shrill sound effects.  Ugh!  The 80 minute running time of The Gallows seemed to last so long I felt like volunteering my own neck for the noose.  Of course, full disclosure, the audience around me jumped, laughed, and applauded.  So Blum seems to know how to please the masses by giving them exactly what they want.  I just wish he would give them what they don't know they want.  Remember, no one knew they wanted The Blair Witch Project or Paranormal Activity until they were given it.  Enough resting on a formula that once worked.  It's long past time to be innovative.  Rant over.  Now go VOD 13 Sins!  And don't you dare contribute your hard earned cash to The Gallows!  (Sorry, but this is what they call tough love.)

Grade: D

Who is this movie for?  It shouldn't be for anyone.  But the reality is, many will be satisfactorily pleased by it.  I just don't want to know you if you are.

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