Leading the way among new DVD offerings out this week is a creepy tale in time for Halloween.
“The Gallows”: 2.5 stars. The film, a very low-budget movie made by Travis Cluff and Chris Loring, manages to score enough points on the creativity side to balance out the negatives of the recycled format. The novice filmmakers have created a production that artfully builds its scares while managing to get the most out of the format.
The story starts 20 years ago when a high school student is killed during a production of a play called “The Gallows.” Fast forward to the present, when the school is getting ready to produce an anniversary edition of the ill-fated play.
Here is where Cluff and Lofing could have spent a little more time with the story. Even with the found-footage format, there are ways to include background information.
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The key to a good horror film is the scares, and “The Gallows” has plenty. But the best scary movies have a thread to tie together the evil that is being presented.
“Dope”: 3.5 stars. Three nerds get caught up in a wild drug deal.
What makes the movie so appealing is that director Rick Famuyiwa has made “Dope” a blend of “Boyz n the Hood” and “Revenge of the Nerds” set in Inglewood.
It deals with some serious issues about growing up while balancing the goofy antics of the three nerds at the center of the story
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