Tuesday, October 09, 2012

The Tall Man


Julia Dennings is a widowed nurse living in a large house in a town formerly lively with its local mining operation, now run-down since the mine has closed.  She lives with her young son and nanny, tending to the mostly white-trash locals.  In recent years though, more than a dozen children have gone missing.  There are no realistic leads on the kidnappings, instead, there is just a local legend about a "tall man" that abducts the children by taking them into the woods.  Most believe it is a legend, but one or two residents swear that he is real and that they have seen him.  One night, Julia's son is kidnapped, and the story takes a lot of twists from there.

This movie was directed by the same guy who did Martyrs.  Had I known that, I probably wouldn't have watched this.  I didn't see Martyrs, but all the reviews on Horrorthon scared me enough to stay away from it.  However, having this guy at the helm explains how this movie could take such an intelligent, cerbral turn from a "who's the ghostly kidnapper" plotline. 

The Tall Man wasn't released in the USA.  Even though this is a very good movie, marketing it would have been a disaster.  As it is, it is clearly marketed as a horror film.  And, for the first 30 minutes, this is a crappy horror movie.  As I watched, I assumed I would give it one to two stars tops.  Then, the film veers into a crime/thriller for 45 mintues, while the last 20 turn this into a social commentary drama, addressing major issues particularly relevant to the 30/40-something generation. 

Not scary, but a very good movie.  I recommend taking a look at it - especially because I'd love to hear others' perspectives.  Just be patient with the relatively dull first 30 minutes.  Once I got to 45 minutes, I couldn't wait to find out how it would develop and wrap-up. 


Crystal Math said...

Even though Martyrs was a traumatizing and angry experience for me, I gotta say I'm intrigued by this movie. Thanks.

Catfreeek said...

I watched this as well and would never have guessed the same director from Martyrs had done this one. My review will be up at some point, I wasn't near as kind as you were.

Octopunk said...

Verrry interesting. I didn't know it was by the Martyrs guy; that plus the weird plot concoction make me very curious.

Trevor said...

Cool! I look forward to your review Cat. I'm already trying to make some predictions about your review - I'm guessing you were disappointed by the lack of horror elements? Can't wait to read it.

Johnny Sweatpants said...

I'm very intrigued as well!

That Martyrs guy has a name ya know - Pascal Laugier.

"Laugier was set to direct the remake of Hellraiser but was later taken off the project due to creative differences with the producers; Laugier wanted his film to be very serious and explore gay S&M culture, whereas the producers wanted the film to be more commercial and appeal to a teen audience."

It's a goddamned shame we'll never get to see the Hellraiser he envisioned.

Johnny Sweatpants said...

He looks like such a pompous snot in his Wikipedia picture. I love this guy!

AC said...

sounds like a mishmash, glad it ultimately delivered.