“The Gallows” | Movie Review

Grade: (D-)

Another drab teenage horror romp with all the commonly uninteresting dialogue and scare-tactics that fails to make it worth the time.


Twenty-years after a tragic accident on the set of a high-school play the drama department has decided to revive the show and when a group of kids on the eve of opening night break in to destroy the set they find something haunting them that will not let them leave.

My Take

I’ll admit my expectations were low for this film but there have been plenty of instances where I have still ended up really enjoying the movie regardless of what little I thought it would deliver. The very beginning was capturing quickly and definitely lured my attention. After the first five minutes I was open to the theory this could end up being an enjoyable horror film.

This notion just as quickly dissipated as the next third of the film showcased bland segments of high-school life through the eyes of a handheld camera, a camera style that was unneeded for much of the movie if you ask me. Regardless of the film style used the material was mindless, and lacking any form of energy or connection to the characters as you watch a guy bully other classmates and pretty much talk down to everyone. None of the other characters were likable at all for the most part and some of the acting at times was laughable.

After a good portion of the extremely slow first act concluded and the setting changed to the school interior at night there was still some hope for a good horror film that could make you jump in your seat from building good moments of suspense. Unfortunately this tension was never built after the initial moments inside.

The scare-tactics were extremely generic and while a couple of them did land to pop you up in your chair, for the most part they failed to land impact. Not to forget the found-footage style given to this project which attempted nothing new in regards to film style.

“The Gallows” could work for a younger audience that could relate to the personalities of the characters but for a more matured crowd you will find them building no credibility to the story and all coming off flat and uninspired. If you really like these kinds of films and don’t mind sitting through the usual eighty-five minute run-time of these movies for a couple of small moments of fright then you could try this one out.

But if you want a story that will pull your attention and truly give you some fights then pass on this one because regardless of the opportunities the setting could have provided this script failed to make the most of it. In the end “The Gallows” was another movie that pulled from many other not so good films to make itself and came out with no foundation on its own despite a fun twist in the third-act. But then again this nice little twist on things was not structured well enough to deliver its full potential either.