What would October be without at least one horror movie to come to theaters? Boring is what many would say, and so we have the final weekend of the holiday trying to gain some revenue before the season is over. So Robbie K is back once more to give you some ideas on the latest of the horror installments to haunt the silver screen. Will it be good? Will it be bad? Will you die of boredom? The answer to those questions is below so let’s get ourselves in shall we as we review:
Movie: Countdown (2019)
- Moves At A Good Pace
- A slightly new twists
- Funny At Times
- Liked The Central Character
- The Story Is Cute
- The CGI work
- The Thrills and Kills Are Mediocre
- A Little Silly In Terms Of Story Telling at Times
- Dead Ends
Horror movies are something that have come to be a little too mass produced, where ridiculous concepts come out of the wood work to try and capture your attention while darkening your dreams. In this case the movie takes a hit at it, but rather than crafting original beasts instead focused on a quick pace to keep you entertained for the most part. Countdown’s limited time limit requires things to move at a brisk pace that is both entertaining and yet complete. The film manages to bring a slightly new twist to the mix, taking an old concept and modernizing it, while still tagging some traditions to it. As such, the film has a little more originality to it and that’s something difficult to capture in these days of over production. In this dark tale, there is fortunately some comedic relief to lighten things up, but not enough to make it a spoof, again portraying some balance that films seem to lose. My feeling for the strongest component of this movie is the character development, and more so the central character of Countdown. Quinn (Lail) is a lovely character that has a little bit complexity past the usual damsel in distress/air head that comes with horror territory. The various levels of personality made for a more engaging heroine, and seeing her evolution as her plight grew more stressful with each passing second. I think Lail was a fantastic actress to watch, delivering a nice performance that went hand in hand with the cuter story she shared with the other characters. The story may not be that harrowing, creepy, or even unique, but there is an energy to it that seems to be a toned-down version of a horror movie that is once more about the characters and not just the thing they are fighting.
While many of these components are nice in terms of storytelling, the movie did cut costs on other areas that may not be impressive to the usual lovers of the genre. First the CGI work needs a little trimming up, looking a bit hokie, faded, and too computer in my opinion. In addition the beast doing all the killing did so in rather, contained ways that were off screen or hidden in shadow. It’s not that I want to see gruesome death and mangling, but a little more details might have been preferred for this writer. And while I enjoyed the story telling for the most part, there were times that the film felt a little silly, taking tangents that were stretches to incorporate in some way to liven up the film. They did not work for me in forms of comedy, but instead became crashes into dead ends where characters, plot points, and other components were left to stand for some wrecking ball to break through. I guess to meet time constraints they took this approach to again be original, but it just fell short as lazy storytelling with these components. Finally, the film is predictable, with only a few things hiding in the wings to try and surprise us. Yet, all the foreshadowing and obvious introduction to the plots were the stars needed to point me towards the things they wanted to keep a surprise and by the revelation I had pieced most things together. Again, kudos for trying, but not the most surprise filled plot.
Overall I did not hate Countdown, but instead grant a nods towards a character centric story with a cute vibe and good pace to entertain. It’s true I would have liked a little more haunting/craziness to come into play to give you that true Halloween thriller you were looking for this late in the season. It’s predictable tale, sort of hidden killer, and silliness that filed away the edge of the movie and thus takes away from the atmosphere they created. I felt that they could have just put this one onto a streaming site, but I’ll give them props for trying to put their work out onto the screen. Yet, this film really boils down to being better suited at the home viewing then coming to theaters so hold out until the release if you can. As such, my scores are:
Movie Overall: 5.0