In The Tall Grass (2019)

In The Tall Grass (2019)MOVIE DETAILS
Name: In The Tall Grass
Year: 2019
Country: Canada
Director: Vincenzo Natali
Main cast: Laysla De Oliveira, Avery Whitted, Patrick Wilson
Runtime: 101 minutes
Production company: Copperheart Entertainment, Netflix


Vincenzo Natali, the well known American director since his feature movie debut Cube (1997), opened with his new film In the Tall Grass (2019) the 52nd edition of the Sitges Film Festival. Present at the venue, accompanied by one of the main cast stars Patrick Wilson, he was happy to come back with a big title, his last work in cinema having been a segment of the ABCs of Death 2 in 2014.

Personally, I was happy to see he went back to the origins, somehow. The last movie we had the chance to see in this same festival was Splice (2009), winner for his special effects, with Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley, which even proposing a mix between science fiction and horror was not a very satisfying story. This time, the also storyboard artist, writer and executive producer Natali, comes back again as a director with a Stephen King novel adaptation. And guess what: it’s again about labyrinths.

With a fresh cast composed by Laysla De Oliveira, Avery Whitted and Patrick Wilson (brought into the horror genre with the saga The Conjuring (2013, 2016, 2020)), he unravels a science fiction story with reminiscences of The Day of the Triffids (the novel by John Wyndham from mid 50s), taking place in only one and very simple location: a field of tall grass. For all the Cube fans, this will already trigger some connections: if Natali has shown he’s good at something, is at taking the most out of simple ideas. However, this field hides some surprises, and the bestsellers writer Stephen King has prepared some horrific for all those who dare stepping into it.

A bit uneven in its development, the movie still delivers what a large audience could be asking for of such a genre: be kind of hooked to the seat until the end. Again, we should ask ourselves: is the fact that it is a Netflix production influencing the movie in a good or in a bad way? As much as it helps bringing new projects into the light and making them available to a large audience, I’m afraid the quality of them keeps being negatively affected. Is the change in the audience habits a reason strong enough to let the industry loose its standards? Let’s hope this feeling can change in the years to come, without having all of us to feel sorry about neither the cinema industry, nor the on-demand platforms that make the media productions so easily available all over the world.

RATE: 6/10


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