2015 has proven to be the year where I am continuously proven wrong about my pick for worst movie of the year. Over the past two years I have been running this site, I have typically had an easy winner for Worst Movie of the Year. It is rather cut and dry, or at worst, with two front-runners. This year though, I have a plethora of bad movies that have been festering in my mind. My readers, I’m sure, feel lucky to see me punished so that you all can be spared. But as for me, I feel like I need to take a shower in rubbing alcohol just to wash the shame out of my brain. The recent movie that I was “fortunate” enough to see was a lovely little horror movie called The Gallows. So now I have another shitty horror movie to contend with Unfriended on absolutely horrendous horror crap that are rots in my brain cavity instead of something constructive or helpful to my life.
Why do these movies make money? Why do people keep seeing this shit? These high school, everyone is a douchebag, nobody is redeemable, horror movies are garbage, and they somehow make money! Plus, to add the little cherry on top of the shit cake, the movie is a found footage movie. The shit keeps piling on! Oh what a lucky day for me.
The Gallows is the story of a high school that is plagued by a terrible tragedy. During a rendition of a play called The Gallows, one of the cast members named Charlie Grimille (Jesse Cross) is accidentally hanged and dies on stage in front of a shocked audience. Jumping ahead 20 years, the high school is doing another rendition of The Gallows… Why they would do this after a kid was murdered 20 years ago, thus bringing the tragedy back to the forefront of people’s mind, and creating (what I would assume to be) a horrific media frenzy is anyone’s guess. But this is never discussed in any detail so why should I give a shit? The movie obviously doesn’t care.
Either way, Reese Houser (Reese Mishler) is cast in the role that Charlie originally played. He is followed by his absolute douchebag of a friend, Ryan Shoos (Ryan Shoos), who annoyingly records every fucking thing that happens in the movie against all common sense when they start to engage in acts of vandalism and when they start dying. But if he didn’t record it, then we wouldn’t have a movie so thanks for that you little prick!
Reese has no interest in doing the play, other than to get close to his crush Pfeifer (Pfeifer Ross), who is the female lead. Realizing that Reese has no interest in doing the play, and also because Ryan is absolute human garbage born out of an Axe Body Spray can, Ryan, Reese, and Ryan’s girlfriend Cassidy (Cassidy Gifford) concoct a plan to break into the school and dismantle the set. The thought process is that with the play off, Reese can console the grieving Pfeifer… Yeah, the plan makes no sense and just proves that everyone in this movie is a piece of shit AND stupid beyond all reason. They break into the school, attempt to dismantle the set, are confronted by Pfeifer, and then to their shock, the stage is reconstructed. After that, the movie turns into traditionally horror movie as these fuckers are stalked by the Charlie ghost and slowly killed one by one.
None of these characters are redeemable. They are the stereotypical, slasher movie, teenager garbage that you do not relate to in the slightest, and do not care about. This is such a dumb trope! For the life of me, I still don’t know why it exists. Here is a tip to horror directors. When you create a story, the idea is to make a character or characters sympathetic. We are supposed to empathize with the character and grow to like the character. This way, when the character dies we have an emotional response. Your antagonist is supposed to be unlikable or your secondary antagonist is supposed to be unlikable. That way, when they die, we can celebrate their comeuppance. But if all of your characters are nothing more than steaming piles of shit with a mouth, then you do not create a group of characters we can enjoy watching die, you create a terribly written movie that nobody wants to watch.
I do not want to watch terrible people doing terrible things and then watch them die! Anyone who does watch these movies for that purpose has their own personal problems they need to work on. Problems that should not be worked out in a 90 minute movie of ‘watch all the people who make fun of me die’ and masturbate to the thought!
Three out of the four main characters are just terrible people. Reese and Cassidy are just asshole teenagers who are just shallow and annoying. Ryan Shoos is a despicable bastard and a bully! I do not want to see their comeuppance or even gain any satisfaction from their death, I just do not want to see them. They do not need to be in this movie. You are essentially making the killer the protagonist and if that is the case, focus on Charlie, and his story instead of the cannon fodder!
The only character that is slightly redeemable is Pfeifer, who turns out to be the daughter of Charlie and her girlfriend. So the most redeemable character is one of the fucking villains! Complain about spoilers all you want, I’ll happily drink your hater tears. I find this ending plot twist kind of hilarious, seeing as how, if Pfeifer was the child of Charlie and Alexis then either A) Pfeifer is 19-20 years old and was held back several years in school or B) Alexis was impregnated by ghost Charlie.
All of these characters are terrible! They are terribly written and it is another case where I hate them and want to see their comeuppance, I just want to stop watching the movie since they are just uninteresting douchebags.
So a minor nitpick, but one that drives me absolutely nuts. Would horror movies PLEASE stop naming the characters after the actors? Why the hell would they do this? It is not only stupid, but it proves that no thought was put into the movie other than to make money so they slapped together a hack script. Pfeifer, Reese, and Cassidy only have their last names changed for the movie while Ryan Shoos is the EXACT SAME NAME as the actor.
You are probably asking why this is even a problem. Well, it is a problem because it proves that no thought has gone into this script. It is blatantly in front of us! If ANY thought went into the script, then these characters would have actual names, backstories, and thought put behind them! Instead, the script just says ‘teenager one’, ‘teenager two’, and we will just insert the first names of the actors in so that they don’t get confused by the character that they are playing! This is becoming a theme in these shitty ‘insert horror here’ movies and it needs to stop NOW!
The Ghost’s Ambitions Make No Sense
So, I have spent a lot of time talking about how the writing is shit mixed in terrible actors, terrible characters, and terrible naming. Now, I’m going to talk about how the killer, Charlie Grimille is an absolute moron as well. Here is the thing, this ghost has absolutely no reason to kill anyone and his motivation is completely nonsensical. Charlie was killed when a prop gallows that fully functioned for some bewildering reason, worked properly, and hanged him. It was an accident, definitely created by MASSIVE negligence from the people who made the prop, and the play itself. But overall it was still an honest mistake.
But either way, Charlie is now out to seek revenge against the son of Rick Houser, the man who was scheduled to play the character until he became sick and Charlie had to replace him as the understudy… Okay… Let’s continue to talk about the stupidity of this character. Why would Charlie blame Rick for his death? It wasn’t like Rick hanged him personally or set some kind of a trap that killed Charlie. He was sick and couldn’t make the performance. This makes him incredibly lucky, but not at fault for Charlie’s death. If Charlie wanted to get revenge, why not go after the guy who built a fully functioning gallows for the play, the stage hand who put up the real rope instead of a prop rope, the drama director for not seeing this potentially fatal error? None of these would make sense for the revenge plot, but they would make more sense than the guy who called in sick the day you died.
It leaves our killer and the only sympathetic character in this movie with no strong motives or goals. He isn’t even seeking revenge against Rick Houser who is ALIVE AND WELL! Instead, he is trying to kill his son. None of this makes sense and if you are about to say that it doesn’t need to make sense it is a horror movie, I CALL SERIOUS BULLSHIT! If this was a ghost that killed because killing was fun, then fine, I can accept that. But it is clear that this ghost has logic behind his murder. The logic is just nonsensical, stupid, and petty.
This movie screams straight to DVD, Netflix Feature, TV movie, or any combination of the three. It is one of those movies that you find on Netflix one Sunday night and decide to give it a watch because you have nothing better to do with the next two hours. It is, most certainly, not a movie that you spend your good money, sit in a movie theater, and watch in silence for two hours. It simply isn’t worth your time or cash in that regard. It is a movie that you can pause or simply stop watching when it gets too insufferable.
This movie should have never touched the big screen, let along make a nationwide release. Yet, there it is, in movie theaters nationwide.
This movie is terrible and I encourage everyone to stay as far away from it as possible. This isn’t even ‘let’s watch this movie and make fun of it bad’. This movie is ‘chew some aluminum foil while taking a cheese grater to the side of your face’ bad.
The acting is bad, the writing is appalling, the killer’s motivation is nonsensical, the shaky cam is poor, and the characters are a bunch of mean-spirited bullies that are annoying to watch. There is no enjoyment you can get out of this film unless you are a gluten for punishment.
Final Score 0/5
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