Crawl took a bunch of critics by surprise. Usually, when a film company (in this case Paramount) is so selective about who is getting a screening, it’s never a good sign. Why were they hiding this one from a majority of critics? Crawl is the embodiment of what a perfect summer movie should be. In many ways, it brought back memories of Armageddon. I remember sitting glued to the screen as somehow our heroes (Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck) managed to blow up that meteor and save the day. The movie defied logic and reason, but damn was I entertained. Crawl evoked those emotions once again.
Director Alexandre Aja demonstrates a deft touch at taking the simplest of sets pieces and using it for his devious purposes. Michael and Shawn Rasmussen crafted a straight forward narrative chock full terror and intensity which will have audiences transfixed to the screen. Barry Pepper and Kaya Scodelario certainly rise to the occasion. Crawl is briskly paced with heart-stopping moments of terror as these gators are hunting this father and daughter. Can anyone please explain why this film wasn’t screened?
Perhaps it was fear that the campiness of the film would cause an uproar amongst reviewers? Do we not remember how The Shallows and 47 Meters Down was received? Not every movie has to be a reboot, sequel, or summer blockbuster. Sometimes we want to go and see a film that requires little to no thinking. Hell, I know critics to this day who swear by Gods of Egypt.
Overall, if it is entertainment that you are seeking this weekend, then look no further than Crawl. If you are looking for something a bit more involved or with depth, then there are undoubtedly other options at the theater. However, before you pull out your debit card, remember what brought us to the movies as kids. We didn’t care about cinematic universes and depth and complexity. We just wanted to have a good time. If that’s what you are longing for, then get a few friends and take a chance on a tale with a little bite to it.