In Curves – Deadly pitfallbroadcast tonight on Rai 4, the young and beautiful Mallory is driving to Denver in her fiancé’s pickup truck, as well as future husband, Brad, to take part in the tests of the imminent marriage, about which, however, he has some doubts. During the journey the girl has a breakdown while she is in an isolated mountain area, where the telephone line is absent. Mallory gets unexpected help from a man who happens to turn up on the side of the road. He says his name is Christian and claims to be on a hike.
The newcomer manages to fix the problem with the engine and out of gratitude Mallory decides to offer him a lift to the nearest town, unaware of the danger he is facing. A little later, while she is at the wheel of her, in fact, the passenger manifests a violent and mentally susceptible character and the protagonist begins to fear for her life. She then decides to make a desperate move, causing a car accident with the car falling off a guardrail, in the hope that Christian – who was not wearing his seat belt – will lose his life in the fall. But the man survives and it is she who finds herself in a very intricate situation, remaining trapped in the body of the car and unable to go out. It will only be the beginning of a cruel struggle for survival, with her tormentor who will come back every now and then to torment her …
Curves – Deadly pitfall: roads already seen
Produce Jason Blum and director Jaume Collet-Serra, two names that should be a guarantee in knowing how to exploit simple stories to turn them into big box office hits. And instead Curves – Deadly pitfallalso thanks to its video-on-demand destination, partially disappoints expectationsrecycling here and there ideas taken from far more inspired prototypes.
From the dangerous roads that made the history of the genre of Duel (1971) and The Hitcher – The long road of fear (1986) to the claustrophobic atmospheres of films such as Buried – Buried (2010) – you’ll have to dig a little to find ours Buried review – Buried – up to the suggestions of extreme choices like those made by James Franco in 127 hours (2010), the screenplay combines a series of situations capable of generating an increasingly morbid and unhealthy tensionto expire in the finale in a showdown more similar to the dynamics of certain slasher films.
Ninety minutes of vision that would like us to become attached to the fate of the unfortunate and naive protagonist but which end up giving us back a sketchy character, with whom it is difficult to enter into effective empathic communion. In fact, even with a fair number of details relating to her background, Mallory is never as alive and credible as the role she would have required, also thanks to the certainly not memorable performance of the blonde Julianne Hough.
A muffled terror
The main problem is that the story never takes risks and stays stable on the antagonism between villain and victimwithout twists or noteworthy secondary figures that give any possible turning point or instill a minimum of suspense: the viewer already knows very well where the story will go and the predictable epilogue is a long-awaited confirmation.
Some psychological and introspective jolts that delve into the infernal drama experienced by the girl, imprisoned in a car, seriously injured in a leg and with food nearing the end, can also create a discreet involvement, but the (sadistic) game gets tired in a short time and it’s hard to find reasons of interest such as to justify the form of feature film, when everything could have been largely resolved in just under an hour. A big forcing then, or the fact that the psychopathic serial killer gets out practically unharmed from the crashed car, removes any likelihood from the story, thus also deprived of any foothold with a hypothetical reality. For other themed titles, read ours special on the best films in which the killer is sought.