Thursday, August 2, 2012

THE TALL MAN (2012) review

Tall Man, The (2012) (1st viewing) d. Laugier, Pascal (Canada)

The children of a rural, depressed Washington state township are disappearing, presumably abducted without a trace by the haunting boogeyman figure of the title. Authorities are baffled, residents are terrified and helpless, and the kindergarten population dwindles. One night, a child is nabbed from under the wing of plucky widow/local doc Jessica Biel who – in an outlandish but undeniably exciting chase sequence – pursues the criminal deep into the wilderness. However, like writer/director Laugier’s Martyrs before, the opening act is not necessarily the film you’re watching, and this element will either pique or pummel viewer enthusiasm come the final credits crawl. Personally, I admired its moxie and the performances (especially Ol’ Faithful Stephen McHattie) are rock solid across the board, but there were numerous logistical leaps creeping up my cortex while I was watching and more that arose during post-show conversations – fact is, a lot of it doesn’t add up, and some inferred socio-political statements about the parenting skills of lower budget families further muddy the waters. Laugier’s English-language feature debut is not a crashing disappointment, but it’s unlikely to enjoy mainstream success or cult adoration. It’s just kind of there.


  1. Loving your blog dude.

    I was actually surprised by how much I enjoyed The Tall Man.

    1. Thanks much, mighty Fistfull! I had a few issues with the pacing and the internal logic of the piece, but overall I actually liked this more than MARTYRS. Granted, I didn't much care for that film, so that might be damnation by faint praise, but I'll keep showing up to see what Laugier has up his sleeve. He has yet to make an uninteresting film; not everyone can claim likewise.