Currently available to rent or buy through video on demand services is the horror thriller, Escape the Field. The movie – directed by Emerson Moore – follows the story of a group of strangers, who find themselves waking up in the middle of a creepy cornfield after being abducted.
In the film, Sam, Tyler, Ryan, Denise, Cameron and Ethan awake in the midst of a field, with no knowledge of how they got there. All they do know is they are lost, scared, and unsure of who to trust.
For some reason, each member of the group has also been equipped with a single item. One person has a gun, another a compass, and so on.
Realising these items will be able to aid them in their escape, the group work together to find a way out of the seemingly endless field. But with stress levels rising and various obstacles and puzzles to overcome, will they find an escape route?
Escape the Field stars Jordan Claire Robbins, Theo Rossi, and Shane West. The movie revolves around a central mystery about abduction and problem-solving, and for the most part it is fairly interesting stuff.
Original? Hardly; but interesting nonetheless. Although elements of this film have been done before (Cube, Escape Room, The Hunt, etc), Escape the Field starts off strong and for the majority of its runtime it maintains momentum.
However, Escape the Field is not without its problems, and sadly, its biggest issue is one which does put a very significant dampener on things. That issue is the movie’s ending, which is rather abrupt, a bit confusing, and frankly quite rubbish.
All of the good work that is built up during the first hour of the movie is largely jettisoned during the final 20-minutes. It is here where the wheels start to come off, as Escape the Field stumbles towards its conclusion, leaving plenty of head-scratching and disappointment in its wake.
The central mystery does have a resolution of sorts, but it leaves lots of questions, and provides few answers. While it could be argued this is to keep audiences guessing beyond the end credits, this line of thinking seems more like an excuse to cover up bad writing than anything else.
All of the hard work to create the set-up and to deliver an intriguing narrative, seems to have been abandoned at the eleventh hour. The final act all comes across quite messy, and feels as if none of the movie’s writers quite knew how to bring things to an end.
This is a shame because as a horror fan, and someone who likes mystery movies, Escape the Field held my attention for a significant chunk of time, and I wanted it to be a really good film. But as it stands, the movie had me, then it lost me, and this is incredibly frustrating.
Had Escape the Field nailed its ending I would be speaking far more positively about it. I might also be recommending it too, as I did find it watchable at times.
What I can recommend are the cast, who are all pretty good. While the central players often feel like stock characters, the actors all deliver their parts well.
There is also a decent amount of suspense in the story, and the build-up is fairly engaging. The movie does have some interesting moments, and director Emerson Moore creates the right atmosphere throughout.
But the ending really does scupper things. Escape the Field has a lot of potential and its low budget approach works in its favour, but ultimately I came away feeling underwhelmed and by the end I was largely disinterested.
So, not terrible, and certainly watchable for the most part, but not quite strong enough. Horror fans may wish to check it out, but be mindful of its shortcomings.