Friday, July 19, 2013

The Tall Man (2012)

Number Rolled: 89
Movie Name/Year: The Tall Man (2012)
Genre: Thiller
Length: 105 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Pascal Laugier
Writer: Pascal Laugier
Actors: Jessica Biel, Jodelle Ferland, Stephen McHattie, William B. Davis, Samantha Ferris, Colleen Wheeler, Eve Harlow, Janet Wright, Ferne Downey, John Mann, Teach Grant, Garwin Sanford, Jakob Davies, Lucas Myers, Katherine Ramdeen, Georgia Swedish, Priya Lily Campbell

Julia was a nurse at the free clinic in a small town undergoing hardship. She survived her lost husband (the previous doctor of the town) and lives with a woman (Christine) and their young David. Even if the mines had not failed and the town begun to break down, the people still would have been tense. An urban legend going by the title of “The Tall Man” has been stealing children in the night. One at a time, the children disappear and are never heard from again. Young David seems to be next on the legend’s list.

This is one of those movies that attempts to reinvent the wheel and is completely successful at it. When I first read the description on Netflix, I was certain I could tell someone what it was going to be about before I even watched it. Meanwhile, there was no way I could have possibly been able to predict the ending just from the blurb Netflix gave me.

There was no recipe. In fact, this was probably the single most successful thriller I’ve ever seen. The questions associated with the mystery part of it continued to build until the movie was nearly over. Straight up until the fact were revealed, I predicted absolutely nothing in a genre I’m usually pretty good with.

The actors were amazing; fully throwing themselves into their parts with so much heart that it was impossible not to believe them. Jessica Biel was absolutely breathtaking, but she wasn’t alone. Everyone from the kids to the older actors gave performances that could not be beat.

Critics didn’t quite trash this; in fact, they were split straight down the middle. Looking over reviews, you’ll find that almost no one agreed on anything. One review would tell you it was thought-provoking and original, the next would tell you it was too long and tedious. I know why the critics were split on this movie, though. It starts off as though it could be going into supernatural territory. Who is the Tall Man? Is he a ghost? Is he the boogeyman? So, it’s easy to go into this movie thinking it’s in a different sub-genre than it actually is in. Don’t go into it thinking Sam and Dean could take on this bad guy, the storyline is much more complex and much more grounded than that.

That’s what makes “The Tall Man” terrifying. Through its twists and turns, it becomes obvious that there’s a sociological morality involved that can’t be ignored. One that makes you realize just how plausible the plot actually is.

Zombies, witches, genetically mutated creatures – they’re all amusing, entertaining and thrilling in their own right. However, there is nothing scarier than a movie that takes a situation that could actually happen and shines a light on it, forcing you to face your own fears.

Parents, you’re going to want to hug your kids after this one.

Overall Opinion – 5/5

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