Review: IN THE TALL GRASS Is A Creepy And Fun Stephen King Adaptation

FIRST IMPRESSION

An enjoyable thriller capturing the spirit of Stephen King's work, In the Tall Grass takes its creepy premise and makes a tense, nail-biting thriller out of it.
Writing
Directing
Acting
Technical Merit

In the Tall Grass, written and directed by Vincenzo Natali, is the latest Stephen King story to be adapted from the screen. Based on the novella by King and his son Joe Hill, this is certainly the best adaptation of the author’s work so far this year (at least until Doctor Sleep comes out) thanks to an eerie atmosphere and some committed performances.

The film tells the story of two siblings who get lost in a seemingly endless field of tall grass after hearing a young boy cry for help, ultimately coming to realize that something evil may want to hold them there forever. Despite the fact that the movie is based on a short work (only sixty pages long), the story is expanded in a way that is eerie and wholly satisfying.

That said, the film does drag quite a bit in the opening, as the characters are still trying to figure out what is happening to them. Once the rules of the grass are established and the characters start searching to find a way out, the movie becomes quite gripping. Not everything makes complete sense, but as with most stories by King, it is more about the novelty of the concept than the details.

One of the more disappointing things about this film is that it does not have anything interesting to say. Yes, there are messages about redemption and the importance of family, but those seem to be more of an afterthought in the movie. Natali’s script does seem to have drained most of the substance typical of King’s work, but at least it stays true to the messed up vision of the fan-favorite horror author.

in the tall grass day

Perhaps the most surprising thing about this film is that the character development is extremely well-done. In the beginning, it seems that the characters are going to adhere to their archetypes pretty closely, but all of them have interesting arcs that allow them to grow over the course of the story. Natali’s script takes the characters in some interesting and unexpected directions, which is quite refreshing.

The ensemble of the movie is also quite good. The lead performances from Laysla De Oliveira and Avery Whitted are both solid, but it is the supporting cast who stands out most. Patrick Wilson gives an over-the-top performance that becomes more and more fun to watch as the film progresses. Child actor Will Buie Jr. also gives a good turn, lending the movie its emotional core.

On a technical level, the film is very strong too. Since a majority of the movie takes place in grass, quite a bit had to be done with the production design and cinematography to give the film a bit of variety. For the most part, Natali and crew succeed in doing that, creating a setting that feels intimidatingly vast yet somehow also claustrophobia-inducing.

While In the Tall Grass may not be the most complex movie, it is an entertaining nail-biting chiller. After the massive disappointments that were Pet Sematary and It Chapter Two, Stephen King fans very much needed a win in 2019, and this film provides that.

In the Tall Grass is now streaming on Netflix.

TRENDING THIS WEEK

The Badass Girls from The Boys | Amazon Prime Vide

There's The Boys...then there's the badass girls from The Boys. » Watch The Boys now exclusively with your Prime membership: http://bit.ly/PrimeVideoTheBoys » SUBSCRIBE: http://bit.ly/PrimeVideoSubscribe About The Boys: The Boys is an irreverent take on what happens when superheroes, who are as popular as celebrities, as influential as politicians and as revered as Gods, abuse their…

Rafting | World’s Toughest Race

While navigating the rapids of the Navua River in Fiji, in the World’s Toughest Race athletes have to furiously paddle if they’re going to stay in their boat, and make it to the end. From the creator of Survivor, 66 teams descend upon Fiji to compete in the most epic global adventure race ever attempted.…

Coroner | Season 1 Episode 1 | Bunny Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of Coroner Thursdays free only on The CW: https://go.cwtv.com/CORgenyt SUBSCRIBE: http://go.cwtv.com/YTSubscribe About The CW: Official YouTube Channel for The CW Network featuring the hit series Riverdale, as well as Black Lightning, The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Supernatural, The 100, Dynasty, In the Dark, and Roswell, New Mexico. Connect with…

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia | Season 4 Ep. 10: Pepe Silvia Highlight | FXX

"That right there is the mail. Now let's talk about the mail. Can we talk about the mail please, Mac? I've been dying to talk about the mail with you all day, okay?"‌ Subscribe now for more It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia clips: http://bit.ly/SubscribeFX In the 14th Season of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, the…

HBO Replay: Boar on the Floor | Succession

When Logan Roy suspects a traitor in his midst, there’s only one way to smoke them out: utter humiliation. And for anyone caught in the crossfires — well, that’s their problem. #HBOReplays brings you the must-rewatch scenes from your favorite shows, specials, and more. #HBO #SuccessionHBO #LoganRoy #BrianCox Subscribe to HBO on YouTube: https://goo.gl/wtFYd7 Succession…

Star Trek: Lower Decks – Meet The Lower Deckers Of The U.S.S. Cerritos

Let the voice cast of Star Trek: Lower Decks -- including Tawny Newsome (Ensign Beckett Mariner), Jack Quaid (Ensign Brad Boimler), Eugene Cordero (Ensign Rutherford) and Noël Wells (Ensign Tendi) -- introduce you to their on-screen counterparts. Stream all-new episodes of Star Trek: Lower Decks on Thursdays, exclusively in the U.S. on CBS All Access.…

The 100 | Season 7 Episode 10 | Broadcasting From The Palace Scene | The CW

Stream new episodes of The 100 Thursdays free only on The CW: http://go.cwtv.com/genHNDyt SUBSCRIBE: http://go.cwtv.com/YTSubscribe About THE 100: The human race returns, after a 97-year exile in space, to a wildly transformed Earth...only to discover that the human race had never truly left. Clarke found herself forced to lead a band of disposable juvenile delinquents…
Avatar
Sean Boelman
Sean is a film student, aspiring filmmaker, and life-long cinephile. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved film, but he credits the film Pan's Labyrinth as having started his love of film as art. Sean enjoys watching many types of films, although some personal favorite genres include dramatic comedies, romantic comedies, heist films, and art horror.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here