Writer/Director Scott Walker (The Frozen Ground) presents the new feature film, The Tank, with a creature that can make anyone have a fear of water (where it resides) or perhaps fear of hiking in the woods, as this creature seems to have the capacity to prey on land for their next meal. I like the script’s idea, but the dialogue sometimes left me with several questions. Who knows where this creature came from or how it evolved over the decades after it may have been transplanted from the ocean (by man or hurricane)? If this sounds confusing, this is how I remain after viewing the film digitally. It may take another viewing to understand what may have left me wondering.
Ben (Matt Whelan, “The Luminaries” TV series) and his wife, Jules (Lucianne Buchanan, “The Night Agent” Netflix series), have a small pet shop business that keeps them busy, and their young daughter Reia (Zara Nausbaum) learning about animals and the environment. Unexpectedly, a stranger arrives, and Ben is informed that he has inherited coastal property from his late mother that was never spoken of before. The family sets out to research the area for the weekend, and the coastal property cottage remains uninhabited. Or so it appears on the first day.
As they seek a water source for the cottage, Ben is okay with descending into the underground water tank to find the key to get water flowing. He succeeds, but unbeknownst to him, the water revives the reason that Ben’s ancestors and generations of those who traveled by ship before them did not survive. I especially enjoyed the visuals of the black and white photographs of Ben’s family, his mother’s diary or journal, and newspaper clippings to inform Ben and Jules what leads to the truth of the property.
The filmmaker selectively allows the audience to view the creature, but the slow reveal is done as first a scary moment for Reia as something lurks and moves under the floor of her bedroom. Little by little, the noises, movements, etc., employed to show the viewers the family is not alone (especially the water tank cover opening after it was secured) reveal the creature’s abilities to move about on land outside the tank. When city or county residents show up on or near the property, the beast shows what it is capable of.
I can’t hide that there was a moment when I wanted to stop viewing the film and not see what may happen to the little girl or the other folks even before a full glimpse of the creature. This impact is thanks to the incredible special effects work on the Beast by Academy Award-winning Richard Taylor (The Lord of the Rings, 2001/2003) and others on his team. I am glad I viewed it through the third act featuring the creature and the impressive camerawork by cinematographer Aaron Morton (Evil Dead 2013, “Sweet Tooth” TV series). The Tank ends with plenty of action, featuring Lucianne Buchanan’s great physicality as she fights to save her family. The end feels rushed, perhaps the editing, but it is not enough to miss out on viewing this filmmaker’s new creation.
Rating: R Run Time: 100 mins
The Tank will be available on Digital on April 25, 2023.
Source: Well Go USA Entertainment