Written by: Adam Vaughn | July 1st, 2021
Till Death (S.K. Dale, 2021) 3 out of 4 stars.
One of the hardest things to bounce back from in a narrative story is a beginning that is utterly depressing, emotionless and does an awful job of setting the tone and pacing for the rest of the film. Such is the major issue as director S.K. Cline, making his feature debut, begins his film with utterly boring exposition. However, as the film reaches the promise of its premise, the viewer eventually finds a film that embellishes itself with clear and intense thrills, tension and various gripping scenes, as we begin to experience the true feeling behind Till Death.
Once the film gets past its beginning, we soon find ourselves in a high-stakes scenario, as photographer-turned-wealthy housewife Emma (Megan Fox, Above the Shadows) finds herself handcuffed to her dead husband. Soon to arrive are two killers (Callan Mulvey and Jack Roth) with a personal vendetta against the rich couple, determined to finish off Emma and claim the two’s safe-locked valuables. However, Emma’s iron will proves to be a formidable adversary against the two burglars, and she fights to survive.
The strongest element of Till Death is witnessing the frenetic pacing of the action as Emma goes up against her antagonists. The violence, suspense and clever pacing and cinematography take the film in all the right directions and into the meat of the story. Till Death utilizes Fox as a strong, clever and motivated protagonist to deliver a solid plot with engaging sequences. By the end, the movie ultimately succeeds in entertaining its audience.
Unfortunately, one does have to push through that dreary opening. Additionally, once we’re in the thick of it, there are various moments where director Dale relies on unlikely circumstances to push the plot forward. While it does add mystery to the film, the husband’s motivation (via the afterlife) never truly finds a respectable resolution, and comes across as an open-ended plot point by the film’s finale.
Overall, Till Death gets the job done with an effective setup, consistent thrills and tension, throughout, and a so-so premise and execution. While a clunky beginning and a rushed ending won’t do the film much justice, there is certainly much to admire about the combined powers of Dale’s direction and Fox’s charisma in the lead role. Any action/thriller seeker will be very pleased with the outcome, and moviegoers will have a fun and exciting experience.