By Casey Campbell
Great monster movies thrive in simplicity. I said that when reviewing Tremors last week, and it’s still true now that I’ve seen Crawl. Coming in at a swift 87 minutes, Crawl never overstays it’s welcome, and offers some pretty cool sequences of suspense in the scariest place on Earth: Florida. It’s also streaming on Amazon Prime and Hulu, so if you’re in the mood for a quick and simple creature feature, look no further.
A hurricane barrels towards Florida’s coast, and college student Haley (Kaya Scodelario) risks driving out of the way to find her father (Barry Pepper). When she gets to his house however, she’s met with rain, wind, and alligators.
The movie works during its many exciting sequences, but somewhat flounders when touching on any character stuff. Thankfully there is much more of the former, and the latter isn’t ever bad, just much less interesting. The obviously CGI alligators look pretty good and do a lot to push you to the edge of your seat. They’re also really damned angry and hungry, and never hesitate to bite the characters whenever possible. The wounds look pretty gnarly, though I wish they were even more gruesome. I want to see a lot of blood in a ravenous alligator movie, damn it! Though, this may be a good movie for people that aren’t gore hounds. There is some, of course, but not nearly as much as you’d expect.
Overall, the movie is a quick fun time. It regularly makes you react, whether by holding your breath during the underwater scenes, or loudly exclaiming “what the fuck” like I did when gators come from the depths and scare the hell out of you. Sometimes, all you need is a nice short alligator movie. It’s definitely worth a watch if you like animal or monster movies.
But if you want to watch a better movie about hurricanes (and also heists), watch The Hurricane Heist. You’ll thank me later.