The Gallows (Blu-ray) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Horror
Director: Chris Lofing, Travis Cluff
Distributor: Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
Duration: 81 minutes

The Gallows (Blu-ray) – Movie Review

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Good: Many extras
Bad: The action starts very late, shaky filming
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Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)


A school play gone horribly wrong, causing the death of the lead actor on stage, that is the background of ‘The Gallows’. Quite scary, we have to admit. Now that, twenty years later, the play is performed again at the same school, at the same venue, it shouldn’t surprise that weird things are bound to happen. Will history repeat itself?


In 1993 a school performance of The Gallows ended in a horrible way. The props were messed with, and right at the end, Charlie Grimille, who plays the lead character August, is accidentally hanged and killed in front of the whole audience, including his parents. Now, twenty years later, the school has decided to perform the play once more.  The role of August will this time be performed by Reese Houser (Reese Mishler). He is one of the cool guys who plays in the football team, but Reese decides to take the role in order to be closer to Pfeifer Ross (Pfeifer Brown), his co-star, on whom he secretly has a crush. His friend Ryan (Ryan Shoos) is less excited about the play though, and tries to talk Reese out of it. Reese knows that he isn’t any good, but it’s too late to back out now, and Pfeiffer would never forgive him. That is why Ryan proposes to vandalize the set at night so the play can’t go on the following day, and Reese can comfort Pfeifer. Reese is reluctant at first, but eventually agrees. He meets up with Ryan and Ryan’s girlfriend Cassidy (Cassidy Gifford) and together they sneak into the school at night. Unfortunately they have only just been at it when they run into Pfeifer. Since they can’t go on vandalizing the set now that Pfeifer is there too, Reese and his friends decide it’s best to just leave, but when they try to open the door, it seems to be locked. They try other exits, but for some reason they can’t get out anywhere. The group are growing quite scared,  as they realize they are trapped. Things get even more freaky when the noose which Ryan threw on the floor, is suddenly hanging proudly once again, this time tied firmly enough to actually kill.

The story starts off really slow, taking a lot of time to introduce the characters and sketch the story of what happened twenty years ago. The preparations of the play seem to be very important, and also lots of time is wasted on Ryan making a fool out of Reese for taking part in the play. Although this is an opportunity to get to know the characters, it just lasts too long, as there is no excitement or horror to be found just yet. It’s only around halfway that the film starts to become a bit more creepy, when the group of four realize that they are trapped, and the horror is about to begin.


Filming is handled quite differently than normal, as everything is filmed by Ryan or one of the others. Thus we see everything ‘first hand’. This makes the film look more realistic, as you only see what they see, in the minimal light they have. You have no clue as to what is going to happen next, just like them. The downside of this filming technique is that it really looks as if amateurs shot the entire movie, filming the ground a lot, speaking right into the camera, with often shaky images. The idea of having the characters film all of it themselves is actually quite nice, trying to give the whole film a realistic look, but sadly it results in bad lighting, bad filming and no dramatic music to add to the excitement. Thus, although of course bad things are bound to happen once they are trapped, there is no atmosphere to make the film truly scary.

The names of the characters are the actual names of the actors, a fun extra that again tries to make the film more realistic. The actors perform quite well, although there isn’t much room for character development and half of the film is shot in the dark, or at least with little light available.

If the film itself didn’t manage to captivate you, maybe the extras will do somewhat better, given you can watch the whole film again there, albeit the original version. Some other of the usual features are also on this release, such as deleted scenes, trailers and other additional information. There is also a gag real, which seems a bit weird for a film such as this one.



Although the idea behind The Gallows isn’t bad, we’ve all seen it before. One field where the film is more original is the filming, which gives the impression that the lead characters filmed everything themselves, adding to the realism. Nonetheless, this is at the same time the weak point, as it causes the filming to be of inferior quality, and it doesn’t really manage to make things exciting. If you’re looking for real horror, it might be best to skip this one altogether.

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Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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The Gallows (Blu-ray) - Movie Review, 5.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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