The more you think about the scenario used in Fall (2022) you realise how perfectly unique it is to generate raw terror.
Two adrenaline junkies decide to scale an ageing, towering radio mast for the purposes of entertaining an audience of followers on a social network. Becky and Shiloh are skilled, however, a tragedy the year before saw Becky lose her husband whilst climbing a mountain and Shiloh feels the ascent would be a necessary remedy to Becky’s grief and alcoholism.
Becky and Shiloh are a fun pair and have a little drama to iron out during the adventure. Whilst you can see the clues straight away, this drama does not dominate the story and dealt with quite swiftly when it surfaces. It does feel that the connections made by Becky to work things out are unusual, if a little weak.
Fall has a few tricks up its sleeve rather that solely relying on the lofty terror of climbing such an eyesore. Coming to the movie it is not a spoiler that the pair become stuck at the top and the filmmakers have fun building the tension up until this moment. Beyond this there are a number of fun ideas to capitalise on the limited options for the pair.
There are some technical liberties taken with the contents of a backpack that the girls have access to. These might raise an eyebrow for the more cynical viewer. However, this is easily offset by the entirely believable escapade with a local dog walker.
The film is bookended with scenes featuring Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Becky’s father who gives a reliably decent performance. However, this is not distracting and the film entirely centres on Shiloh and Becky. The two are utterly convincing as they tackle the fairly demanding task of being the sole focus of the film. Shiloh oozes spunk and charisma as the crazier of the two. Becky’s rollercoaster is harrowing early on and she carries this off well and continues to carry some heavy baggage throughout the experience fraught with disappointment and joy as their escape attempts meet with varying success.
The special effects in Fall at rather impressive. Whilst I’m sure there is a greenscreen at play, there are moments of “how did they do that?” as there is no way they shot at the top of KVLY-TV mast. Every frame is clean and filled with colour. The cinematographer has enjoyed putting together some beautiful shots that easily convey the isolated and dire circumstances the girls have found themselves in.
Much like the original Open Water or Buried, Fall makes the most of its location and packs it full of interesting notions to keep the audience’s attention. Fall is a competent thriller that will passively impact pockets of the audience more so depending on their ability to deal with heights.
Poster at the terrific. All perfectly capture the thrills of the film with ease and will terrify those with vertigo concerns. Possibly too effectively.
Fall (2022) is available to rent from Amazon in the UK now.