THE FLOOD is a new horror movie with both alligators and a hurricane. Oh, and a jailbreak. And no, it’s not campy. Not really. And that’s the true sin of this movie because it could’ve been Sharknado-fun otherwise. Read our The Flood movie review here!
THE FLOOD is a new alligator horror, action, thriller genre-hybrid movie. With a runtime of just 1 hour and 33 minutes, you’d think it could be good fun. And at first, I still believed that maybe it would. It just really isn’t. The storyline is dreadful and more than anything, I felt sorry for the actors having to deliver such cringeworthy lines.
There was definitely an opportunity for this movie to be the entertaining kind of genre hybrid where horror takes charge, but the action keeps the pace high. However, comedy is usually the third leg in those gorgeous genre threesomes. This one has no humor. None that work for me – and it’s not officially a comedy in any way.
Continue reading our The Flood movie review below. Find it in Theaters, on Demand, and Digital from July 14, 2023.
Familiar faces in a predictable plot
I absolutely adore when indie movies go all in on a crazy premise and have familiar faces in the leading roles. From Sharknado to Piranha 3D or even Awakening the Zodiac. It’s a treat when something can surprise you with a different take on things and actors that you already know.
Unfortunately, The Flood completely misses the perfect opportunity to lean into that camp and kitsch universe that made others become cult franchises. Hell, The Meg is another obvious example though that one had a larger budget, of course. And I’m still very excited about Meg 2: The Trench coming soon.
In The Flood, we get a jailbreak during a Louisiana hurricane, and alligators are thrown into the mix early on as well. Crawl (2019) did the whole hurricane and alligator storyline much better. Something that only becomes more apparent when you see the mess this one makes of it.
Good intentions, bad execution
I’ve read the statement by the director and based on what he says, I was expecting a real treat. Sure, there’s a bit too much talk of “making it into a drinking game”, which – admittedly – I could’ve suggested. However, The Flood isn’t the fun and kitsch movie that is usually the basis of a drinking game.
It’s more of a “so bad, it’s just bad, so we might as well drink”-notion.
The director’s statement also includes the words: “This movie is meant for one thing and one thing only – for the audience to have a great time at the movies”.
I love when a director is honest about this being their mission. Unfortunately, I have to say: Mission failed!
I mean, fair enough, he does go on to say “This movie is meant to make you feel like a kid sneaking into an R-rated Sunday matinee”, but that does not mean it shouldn’t be well-made or at least have a story that makes a tiny bit of sense.
Or, and I’m fine with this option as well, go much harder into the weird and crazy stuff. Not just the “this isn’t politically correct” and “we drop some f-bombs”. Forgive me for quoting The Devil Wears Prada, but all I could think was “Florals? for Spring? Groundbreaking!”
Horror is rarely politically correct, but it does tend to have a tongue-in-cheek attitude about it. And f-bombs are almost always part of it. What kind of “Karen“-approach is it to feel that not being politically correct or saying “F*ck!” is cutting-edge entertaining horror action?
Again, I appreciate the idea, but it is just so far off the stated mark that I feel like too many “yes men” were involved in the production of this movie. The straight, white, middle-class, yes men, would be my guess. All going “Great idea, Chad” And no, the director’s name isn’t Chad… but one of the screenwriters is.
Watch The Flood in US Theaters or On Demand
Brandon Slagle is the director of The Flood and I feel surprisingly confident that he can make much better horror movies than this one. There are moments that work remarkably well, but they’re just moments. As a whole, this movie just is not good.
The Flood was written by Chad Law (Daylight’s End) and Josh Ridgway (Section 8). Apparently, both the director and filmmaker share a love for 80s and 90s action cinema. Well, so do I. Truly! Which, yet again, is why I feel like this movie had all the right intentions and just did not work in execution.
While Brandon Slagle states that the characters are “essentially archetypes”, I would go so far as to call them tropes and stereotypes. I mean, go ahead and put the one female main character in a tank top, but at least make a fun point of it. After all, she is the sheriff, so it’s pretty silly when you don’t lean into it.
In the beginning, there are lines that indicate it’s all fun and game, but this touch is lost towards the end. Ultimately, I’m probably more irritated and disappointed than anything. I wanted the movie Brandon Slagle was talking about and describing in his “Director’s Statement”. Fingers crossed I’ll get it next time around. I’m ready to give him another shot.
If you want to watch a genre-mix movie that is out there with its plot and has a wacky story meant to entertain, you’re better off going for the low-budget indie treat Mind Leech or the South Korean crazy horror action movie Project Wolf Hunting. Seriously, you do not want to miss out on Project Wolf Hunting.
On the other hand, if you watch The Flood and enjoy it, I’m sure you’ll find Disquiet starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers a real treat. The two are equally bad in very different ways. For the record, I do think The Flood is better despite these two getting the same low rating.
The Flood is out in US Theaters, On Demand, and Digital from July 14, 2023.
Director: Brandon Slagle
Writers: Chad Law, Josh Ridgway
Cast: Casper Van Dien, Nicky Whelan, Louis Mandylor
A horde of giant hungry alligators is unleashed on a group of in-transit prisoners and their guards after a massive hurricane floods Louisiana.