Fountain Pop loves its found footage. The genre really doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all with a new (and the last supposedly) Paranormal Activity coming out soon. And on Blu-ray shelves there is no shortage of found footage there either. The latest one, which actually did really well at the box office, is The Gallows, of course from none other than Blumhouse Productions.
Twenty years ago at a small Nebraska high school, student Charlie Grimille was accidentally hung to death during a performance of a play called The Gallows. Now in present day, the school plans to put the play on once more but all lead actor and football player Reese (Reese Mishler) can think about is his secret crush on the female lead Pfeifer (Pfeifer Brown). Reese has cold feet about his performance in the play and decides with a trouble making friend, Ryan (Ryan Shoos) and his girlfriend Cassidy (Cassidy Gifford) to sneak in the night before and destroy the set so the play will be called off. But once in the dark school that night they discover secrets about the past and confront something otherworldly that may be seeking to right old wrongs.
The Gallows is by no means original. Much of the found footage genre rarely is. But it is all about the experience and the presentation and in that category The Gallows does pretty good. The setting of a high school at night is a nice change and the performances by all the cast members are decent as well. But it is the atmosphere that nails it here. The creepy nuances of the students not being able to find a way out of the school, the hangman’s noose that seems to be appearing back up on the gallows by itself and the secrets of the death twenty years before are all intriguing factors that make for a fun ride. The film clocks in at a very brisk 81 minutes but it works well for the story keeping things interesting and fast moving. And once the scares start building up in the last third there are some pretty great chase scenes and thrills to be had. Overall The Gallows is an above average found footage flick with much to enjoy. Recommended.