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The Gallows(2015)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Travis Cluff
Chris Lofing

Reese Mishler/ Reese
Pfeifer Brown/Pfeifer
Ryan Shoos/Ryan
Cassidy Gifford/Cassidy
2 10
Dense teens are trapped in a school with a vengeful specter holding up a noose on their tails. They run, scream, bicker and film the whole thing of course. Sigh, another one of those...

Before I elbow drop this sucka into mash potatoes, this is where I am coming from: found-footage is played the f*ck out! The gimmick has BEYOND overstayed its welcome in my bubble of a world and if I don't see another one of these for the next 15 years of my life - I'M ALL GOOD WITH THAT! Yes on one end, it could be a unique and sly way to tell a story, blurring the line between fantasy and reality. On the other end though, it can also be a shoddy and cheap-jack way to make a movie and a buck.

From an audience member’s point of view, there was ZERO reason for THE GALLOWS to be on the big screen… ZERO, other than it obviously cost peanuts to make, is aimed at the non hardcore horror teens and it will most likely make a profit come opening weekend. I actually came out of this one pissed off. Why? Well,even thought it was a free screening, my time was ripped off! 80 minutes of morons running and yelling in the dark does not equal fun times for this twat! Here are a handful of reasons why THE GALLOWS can go hang itself!

-The set-up was a tad farfetched with an incentive to get our teen heroes to the main location (school) being dumb as Trump. I didn’t fully buy it! Talk about starting on the wrong foot…

-The dude holding the camera (Ryan Shoos) was beyond unlikable and annoying with motivations that left me baffled aside from him being an asshole. He’ll make you want to enter the screen and pummel the Night of the Living Shit out of him. Think an evil Shaggy from Scooby-Doo but one in dire need of a BJ, a beating and a life!

-People bickering, yelling and trying to open doors over and over and over again does not make for suspense charged entertainment. Too bad the bulk of The Gallows was about that.

-I don’t know what the budget was but if they had coin it certainly didn’t go into visual effects since there were barely any here. This baby sure could have used them to spruce up its Zzzz inducing happenings.

- I thought of my laundry and how I had to clean my gym clothes at the halfway mark – never a good sign.

-How many people had video cameras in this flick? I counted one, but yet, said camera must have teleported; everybody was filming when nobody was filming, make sense?

-Ummm, if I‘m locked in a haunted school using that cell phone to make an outside call would be my NUMERO UNO priority. Using it for light and THEN thinking about making a call during the last act = stupido to serve the plot! The same went for that fire alarm. You want to me to root for characters this f*cking thick? Come on man...

-The finale maybe could have been scary if I wasn’t laughing my ass off at what they were serving me. The villain (holding up that noose like a reject from QVC) looked ridiculous and the fear set pieces felt like trailer moments (or left-over scenes from a Paragarbage Activity movie) that were shoe horned in here for the sakes of much needed production values as opposed to organic parts of the narrative.

-The final frames and the DUH twist that came with them. WOW. Not only does the logistics of said twist make zero sense when you stop and think about it, the execution was laughable to say the least.

Anything positive to spit? I thought Pfeifer Brown was really good in her role; she was definitely the most convincing of the lot. Reese Mishler wasn't always 100% but at least he was endearing (and kind of looked like a young Henry Cavil). One “boo scare” got me, the sound design hit home at times (loved what they did with the alarm) and the flick put out an efficient “morbid” atmosphere now and again via its lighting (or lack of).  And I also appreciated them Cassidy Gifford cleavage shots! Why? Because I’m a hetero sexual male with a penis who likes tits, that’s why. Other than that, sorry, this swift yet felt like a 3 hour epic blew goats. Hang em high!

Bruises on a neck.
T & A
Cassidy Gifford's cleavage bobbling out of that tight top was as good as it got!
Just like Roger Murtaugh said: "I'm too old for this shit." I'm definitely not the target audience for this drivel. My friend's 15 year old daughter saw the film with me and she LOVED it - her rating was 7 on 10! So there ya have it! Personally, here’s THE GALLOWS in a nutshell: duh set-up, running/yelling in the dark, nothing happens, dumb moves to serve the plot, dim-witted cap-off, roll credits — you’re 20 brain cells dumber! That’s your bag? Knock yourselves the f*ck out! Pfeifer Brown owned it, the somber atmosphere & sound design sometimes hit home, Reese Mishler was aight and Cassidy Gifford’s rack was the stand-out visual effect in the flick — other than that... nobody’s home! In my useless opinion, even fans of found footage should wait for VOD (or skip it all together) — how this got on the big screen is beyond me.
The filmmakers raised the money for the film via shooting a trailer that cost 250$

The original title for the movie was Stagefright.