Review by Dan Skip Allen
There are a lot of different angles from which horror can be approached. Some are body horror, monster horror, and slasher horror. The Free Fall is a psychological horror film, a kind of horror that plays tricks on the mind. It also has elements that fool the audience that is watching the film. The Free Fall is a very effective film in this regard.
The film focuses on a woman played by Andrea Londo. She witnesses the gruesome death of her parents. This causes her to try to take her own life, but she ends up surviving. Her husband (Shawn Ashmore, X-Men) is trying to nurse her back to health with the help of a maid. She doesn't know what's real and what's not. This causes her to have graphic dreams. These dreams run the gamut of very violent bloody scenes of death and gore to visuals of people who may or may not be there.
The director Adam Stillwell uses a lot of different techniques to show all the various forms of psychological horror in the film. They are very realistic scenes that show the main character's state of mind, such as looking into a mirror and seeing various people who aren't there or scenes of doing or saying things that the protagonist doesn't remember. Also, she remembers instances of a bloody tub or crawling on the floor smearing blood around. These all work to create a disturbed state of mind.
The camera work and editing go hand in hand to help create this atmosphere of confusion and dread. The cinematography by James Kniest is stunning. The blood almost comes to life at times and the dream sequences are so real they are hard to distinguish from the real sequences. The score is very good as well. It moves forward and backward as the scenes do. It becomes softer and louder at different times I mean. The technical aspects of the film play right into the overall story
Andrea Londo is a relatively unknown actress, but she shines in all of this blood and violence. In between, she keeps us guessing as to what's going on. She has scenes where she's breaking down crying and others of sheer confusion. The dinner sequence shows she can be a real star in the future, but it's the little things she does that show why she got this role. Her eye ticks and hand movements are brilliant. She's going to be a star after this film.
The writer, Kent Harper, is primarily known as an actor. He steps behind the camera to write the script this time. He uses his experience acting to create a script with blood, tension, and plenty of scares. He puts the viewer in the lead actress's head and that makes for quite a ride everybody has to go on in the film. The dialogue is very precise to not give anything away along the way. All the actors act out their lines with great precision and professionalism.
The Free Fall has a lot going for it if you are a horror fan or if you want to see a good movie in general. Andrea Londo gives a very good performance as this woman who is lost in her own mind. She doesn't know what's real and neither do we as viewers. The script, direction, and score are all solid as well. This is a better than average horror film. The psychological aspects work perfectly. Even though it's coming out in January, notoriously a dumping ground for genre films, The Free Fall is worth your time.
The Free Fall hits theaters and VOD on January 14.