Hey gang, Valkor here. And I’m taking this bit of downtime to catch up on a few films that need watching, since the other pages will be taking a bit of a break. And it’s been a nice start thus far as I’m not swamped with all things horror – believe me, I’ll try to balance things out as much as possible as we go along throughout the year. Don't get me wrong because I like horror, but it’s too much of a good thing you know? So let’s dig into a little drama/action with this latest film to cut across my desk – Free Fall. It’s like “Man in Box”… only this time it’s a woman.
Free Fall centers on business executive Jane (Sarah Butler), who on the day she reports in for work, things are looking pretty glum. Turns out the night before, her supervisor Mike, seemingly jumped to his death. As Jane starts to clean out his area, she discovers a flash drive hidden beneath his desk. Looking through the files, she discovers what Mike was working on – someone in the company is embezzling funds and all fingers point to head honcho Theodore Gault (Malcolm McDowell). Jane notifies her boss, Taft (Ian Gomez), who thinks this situation needs to be contained and taken care of. And how does he respond? He calls in heavy hitter Frank (D.B. Sweeney – Swamp Shark) to “fix” the situation. After questioning Jane, he realizes she knows too much and attempts to take her out. Jane escapes and makes her way towards the elevators; Frank tells Taft to stop the elevators, but the systems gets all screwy and Jane is stuck between floors ten and eleven – with no possible way out. Now she’s trapped in a box, in a building with two men who want her dead. So how does it all go down? You’re gonna have to watch to find out, but you might already know how this one will end.
The “Man in Box” tales have been hit or miss with “Buried” leading the pack. And I’ve seen the “trapped in an elevator” film with… well “Elevator”. But that film dealt with more than one person inside the box, which was nice but not all that great. So how does Free Fall compare to similar films?
Free Fall is a pretty sharp and intense little drama, which is balanced out with some hard hitting action, though that happens later in the film. And thankfully is not as claustrophobic as I would have guessed, since much of the story takes place outside of the elevator, or we as the viewers, are on the outside looking in. The story is simple and predictable, but it works as it starts off pretty strong and stays the course throughout. With the suspense levels, I was all but ready to pass it off, until the intensity started to kick in; it isn’t anything to the extreme, but it’ll have you on the edge of your seat… for a moment or two. The action, when it does hit, is nicely choreographed with the camera held back at a nice distance and things not moving too quickly. The acting sells it and not only does Sarah Butler put on a rock solid performance, but she looks especially good doing it. I thought the set up of her doing kickboxing moves was a little too obvious because we know it’ll come in handy later. But that’s what we wanna see – people kicking the shit out of one another! D.B. Sweeney also does a fine job of being the baddy; he’s brutal, terrorizing and menacing all in one role. My favorite scene has to be when he opens the elevator from floor ten and he’s staring up at Sarah – super creepy! Free Fall, in my book, was an entertaining little film that didn't disappoint.
I mentioned the opening with the kickboxing above, I thought that was a little too obvious. And then there’s the final confrontation between Sarah and Gault, which ended “too neatly” for my taste as I expected a little more aggression given the circumstances. Then there’s the predictability of it all, but that’s just nitpicking; I mean if the film is at least enjoyable, you won’t care too much about what happens next – just enjoy the ride.
If you happened to be bored or just looking for something to kill sometime, then might I suggest checking out Free Fall; it’s a pretty decent action flick, with fair levels of suspense that delivers. And out of TOV 5 stars, I give Free Fall a 3.5.