DIR: Alexandre Aja • WRI: Michael Rasmussen, Shawn Rasmussen • DOP: Maxime Alexandre • ED: Elliot Greenberg • DES: Alan Gilmore • PRO: Alexandre Aja, Craig J. Flores, Sam Raimi • MUS: Max Aruj, Steffen Thum • CAST: Kaya Scodelario, Barry Pepper, Ross Anderson
Alexander Aja, the man who, many moons ago, gave us a quite credible, scary remake in The Hills Have Eyes, is back on something close to form with Crawl, a horror/disaster mashup about a father and daughter under siege by alligators during a storm in Florida no less. What’s the chances?
The film takes its name from the crawlspace one finds in many American homes, especially homes found in those stickier, hotter climes, and that is where the bulk of the action takes place as daughter must try and rescue her injured father from a crawlspace after he goes AWOL during a storm. If the storm wasn’t bad enough to be dealing with, said crawlspace is filling with water and alligators, so rescuing herself is also part of her agenda.
Of course, this wouldn’t be an American horror/disaster film if there weren’t estrangements between loved ones, in this case a father and daughter who need to discuss the family break-up. Also up for discussion is their unhealthy competitive streak which has also resulted in her delving into the world of competitive swimming thanks to dad’s sporting ambitions (see where this is going).
A perfunctory laying out the stall and box ticking of all the usual clichés is soon forgiven once the ‘what the hell are we going to do about the alligators?’ plot kicks in. Throw in a nasty sense of humour, some nice suspense and surprises, add the right amount of gore and it makes an acceptable date movie that has plenty of brain-dead thrills for its modest running time.
15A (see IFCO for details)
Crawl is released 23rd August 2019