The Gallows | Film | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

The Gallows

More "found" video footage of horror, this time captured at a school

Schools are super-creepy at night, says a character in this new horror film from the production house behind the Paranormal Activity franchise. To drive the point home, he says it again a few minutes later. And despite The Gallows' weak spots and its many clichés, the dude is right. Schools are creepy at night, particularly this one. The film follows four students — sensitive bro Reese, "theater nerd" Pfiefer, jock asshole Ryan and his cheerleader girlfriend, Cassidy — who get trapped in their school overnight after a prank goes awry. Twenty years prior, a student was hanged accidentally and died while performing in the titular play, and now the school has decided to re-stage it. Huh? Whatever. That shadowy figure stalking the foursome with a hangman's mask and a shitload of rope is probably unrelated. Like Paranormal ActivityGallows is a found-footage affair, which, along with its jocks-versus-nerds subplot and character named Pfeifer, feels sorta Clinton-era. But beyond the tired tropes and lazy scares are some pretty fun moments, and if you can stomach the Olympic-tier douchebag who mans the camera for most of the film, the spooky stuff should be a breeze.

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