April 12, 2013 (VOD)
Lucas Till as Scott
Crystal Reed as Bess
Sarah Bolger as Jules
Bess is the new girl at the local high school, but she already has her eye on a boy – soccer star, Scott Norris. Although shy, her infatuation with him grows beyond the point of newspaper clippings and drawing hearts around yearbook photos. Yet many girls have their eyes on the budding young athlete and the competition is thick. How far will she go to have him?
Yaaaawwwwwnnnnnn… I’m sure many of us have encountered the exact same plotline several times on the big screen and – disturbingly enough – even in our own lives! I never knew anyone who took things as far as the psycho de jure in Crush, but they seem to be quite common in Hollywood. Yet, originality aside, this isn’t a terrible film.
The execution is more or less decent. The first half of the film is a bit of a slow burn, but enough ‘accidents’ happen to those interested in Scott to maintain interest. Yet, the character development is the real highpoint. The action revolves around Scott and Bess, but the other principles also receive quality treatment. None of them are the most nuanced characters – which goes with the territory of high school teenagers – but several of them have that ‘it’ factor that wins your allegiance, or earns your scorn. Once more, Bess – the sinister protagonist – is complex enough to keep us interested in how her infatuation will play out even though we all know the basic direction we’re headed. Actress Crystal Reed shoulders the burden of the character well and her portrayal is vital to selling critical plot feints.
Good character development often depends on good acting and the acting – generally – makes up for much of the woefully predictable action. The script is amateurish. No scares. Minimal gore. There is little to appeal to horror fans for most of the film, save the suspense of the outcome, which isn’t bad. A horror veteran would find it a touch predictable, but a novice would be satisfied.
This one also isn’t a bad teens-early 20s date flick. Flaws aside, many characters will be relatable and remind you of people you know – obsessive or otherwise. Because of the lack of scares and gore, Crush is also accessible to the young and uninitiated. (No chance of him/her turning away in disgust.) And even if a touch predictable, the acting makes the film entertaining enough to endure the slow parts and anticipate the outcome.
Bottom Line: A neat little thriller that will appeal to teens and young adults who are not interested in scares and gore, but like a fairly executed, albeit predictable, storyline.