July 1, 2010
REDBOX RENTAL REVIEW OF THE WEEK: THE CRAZIES
In a genre that has become chalk-full of laughably bad, second-rate, worthless, generic films, finding a quality horror movie is extremely difficult to come by. In fact, even finding a simple, run-of-the-mill, average horror film is becoming just as equally hard to find; but if you've got a dollar to your name, a Redbox location nearby, and an itch for the ordinary, then I've got just the mediocre horror movie for you.
The Crazies is a remake of the 1973 film of the same name about a small farm town in Iowa trapped between the outbreak of homicidal lunacy and military madness. The film doesn't seem consciously set out to buck the common themes and trends of typical horror movies, but it doesn't necessarily subscribe to them either. The film wisely opens with one of the most haunting and enthralling scenes in the entire movie. As a sign of things to come, a "Crazy" interrupts a children's little league baseball game by wandering into the outfield armed with a rifle. Things progressively get worse as the outbreak continues. The plot is as simplistic and basic as you will find, even for horror movie standards, but it is executed in a way that still manages to keep you entertained.
Timothy Olyphant (HBO's Deadwood, Live Free or Die Hard) plays Sheriff David Dutton, a man shouldering the large burden of protecting his town, family, and friends, all while trying to solve and make sense of the recent pandemonium. With only his wife and deputy Russell as allies, they do all they can to survive the chase as they set out to find refuge in a not-so-nearby major city. The action is often and though the movie does stoop to using a few "cheap scares," it is by no means overloaded. As is the case with most horror films, the "F word" is forced into the dialogue every couple of scenes to the point of overkill, and the film could have benefited from more character development and backstories.
Overall you get what you pay for with The Crazies: it's an average, well shot, low budget, mindless, horror film. C-
The Crazies is rated R for blood, violence, and language.