Fall (2022) – Film Review

fall film review

Director: Scott Mann
Cast: Grace Caroline Currey, Virginia Gardner, Jeffrey Dean Morgan
Certificate: 15

By Roger Crow

If Alfred Hitchcock were around now, would he be making movies with drones, mobile phones and thrill-seeking gal pals? Probably not.

However, Fall, like Vertigo, relies on primal fear and psychology for its thrills.

Like Neil Marshall’s sublime subterranean classic The Descent mashed up with Cliffhanger, the first few minutes adhere to the golden rules of such thrillers: a tragic event, a traumatised hero, or heroines, and a flash forward. Textbook. I even await the title card ‘One year later’, though 11 months later leaves me one month out.

That’s the joy of Fall. It flags up obvious tropes so that for the most part you’re one step ahead of the game.

fall 2022 film review movie


Anyway, a booze-soaked, suicidal, grieving heroine Becky (Grace Caroline Currey) is on the verge of an OD when she’s saved by Hunter (Virginia Gardener), her fellow climber from the first few mins. Hunter, a young Reese Witherspoon lookalike, has the mother of all climbs on offer, a 2000-foot high radio mast in the middle of nowhere, and drags her mate along for the ride. Imagine all those clicks, and not just from online fans drooling over her intentional Lara Croft cleavage.

But oh, so many skeletons in the closet. So much fear. And little wonder.

However, climb the rusting, far-from-safe ladder/tower the girls do, with barely any supplies, because, duh, who needs to go prepared? Didn’t you see 127 Hours? That all worked out fine, right? And tell your loved ones, or the authorities? That’s for wimps.

Who needs safety precautions when you have that many followers?

Though obviously a signal helps. And that’s the key irony: a comms tower which denies the heroines communications.

So as they climb, and we get close-ups of rusting bolts, and knackered metalwork, it feels like an episode of Casualty just before the inevitable disaster. We know something bad is pending, but that Jack in the box feeling of “When is everything going to go wrong?”

fall 2022 film review


And when it does, the stunning backdrops means you do start holding your breath.

What follows is a genuinely brilliant series of The Martian-style hacks to get from A to B. The dynamic between the friends takes sharp left-hand turns, including a couple of twists that not even a jaded cinephile like me saw coming. Yes, some plot points scream at viewers far sooner than the friends react to them, and yet one twist is brilliantly handled. It’s also a lot darker than I’d expected. Thankfully.

The resolution, when it comes, feels a little rushed, but it hardly matters.

Fall towers above many other survival thrillers, and even on a hi-def TV, will lead to vertiginous thrills that are hard to beat. I can only imagine how gasp-inducing it must have been in IMAX.

See it immediately, and don’t forget to breathe.

Signature Entertainment presents Fall on Digital Home Premiere

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