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Kaya Scodelario – Haley Keller
Barry Pepper – Dave Keller
Ross Anderson – Wayne
This is one of those movies you read about before its release in cinemas and know exactly what to expect when you go to see it. There are no surprises here – you get 86 minutes of hungry reptile beasts floating around a neighbourhood as though they’ve arrived at an all-you-can-eat buffet. The story of Crawl is so basic that you might wonder what the producers manage to fill all the screen time with, but they pull it off nicely with plenty of jaw-snapping action. Who’d have thought a croc or two would cause so much carnage?
The winning element of Crawl has to be the way it draws the viewer in; the two main characters trapped in their home as they try intensely to get past two hungry alligators and make a break for the only way out. It makes a good enough base for a story and this is then built on as our athletic badass (Scodelario) takes on the reptiles by herself. Something of a guilty pleasure, this movie is classic case ridiculous-but-enjoyable. And the CGI used to portray the man-eaters is fantastic; with each WHOOSH of a tail the action becomes even more convincing (although an alligator swimming around inside a shower cubicle is a bit bizarre). Nothing about Crawl seems fake, the visuals are superb and the leading lady sustains the tension as she jumps from one floating object to another in order to find a solution to her deadly predicament. If you don’t enjoy this movie in any way, I guarantee you’ll still have one question on your mind: whether or not both characters manage to survive..
So, the shit bits of Crawl.
I have to say, the beginning is (literally) a bit of a drag. With the young woman at first trying to locate her father – and then trying to get him out of the crawl space – there really isn’t much to see on screen other than Haley dragging Dave towards the way out. Building up the tension it might be, but this darkly lit rescue scene isn’t overly thrilling.
There are obviously going to be some people around the world who think Crawl is a pile of shite – and although I don’t completely agree I understand why. This movie is “one of those”, a game of cat and mouse between a human and an animal that ultimately turns out to be a ridiculous feat based upon a situation that “would never happen”. It’s far-fetched.
Fancy something a bit different? Give Crawl a go. It’s no blockbuster but it entertains intensely for an hour or so. The image of swirling dark grey clouds and impending storm give it a sense of doom, and that’s before the hungry alligators arrive to wreak hungry havoc. It all makes a watchable piece of film.
I wouldn’t look twice if I spotted it for £10.00 in Asda. £5.00 however, and it might just make it into my shopping basket.