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This piece was written during the 2023 SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labour of the actors currently on strike, the movie/series/feature being covered here wouldn't exist.

The Tank

I started this film with quite high hopes as the film boasts a decent cast and a gripping title. Reading the words The Tank made me feel claustrophobic before watching and I was hoping for some dramatic suspense. However, with a weak script and missed opportunities, this film becomes banal and boring, fast.


Following a man called Ben who after inheriting his mother's abandoned coastal property, takes his family there and accidentally unleashes an ancient, long-dormant creature. He now must save his family from this ancient, scary beast.


The family begins loving animals in their shop, even rats, and discussing dinosaurs, as if they know a lot about creatures - it’s a poor and predictable irony that they’re then hunted and almost killed by one. It doesn’t take long for the family to get to the house - but then nothing much else happens - it takes roughly 43 minutes before we hear/see the monster, which is almost halfway through the film. Character development is seriously lacking, with very little backstory to work from. The father's actions are questionable - you’ll have to just go with it when watching. In the end, the script felt rushed and left no time to build suspense, and some obvious continuity errors that I picked up on ruined any buzz.

There’s a mystery around what happened to Ben’s parents and sister, but it’s weak and weird at times. These flashback scenes do not help the flow of the film but rather disjoint it - and they act as spoilers for the rest of the film. It’s thrown in to give the script some depth but really made it ridiculously shallow.

The Tank

The monster is what makes this film exciting - they use prosthetics for effects rather than relying on CGI which truly enhances the viewer's experience. There just weren’t enough scenes with it. There were many missed opportunities for jump scares and to build on what the monster/creature represents. I can only stretch the story to be Ben confronting his inner demons, and fears surrounding his previous and current family. The creature is like something from Alien/Stranger Things, and it actually quite scary when on screen. The noises it makes are creepy - this just needed to be from the very beginning, not 30 minutes from the end.

The acting is 50/50 - their reactions to bad news such as people dying, the creature, and the truth about Ben’s parents are bland and underplayed, which doesn’t help the viewer feel their fear. To say there is a lot of talking, there isn’t a lot of emotion in the script to work with. The cinematography is dark, (classic horror genre trope there) and the music is surprisingly good. Varied, and complimentary to the scenes, it’s one of the only decent things about this film.

The Tank

Safe to safe I was ready for the film to end, as Ben is underground in the tank, surrounded by water, I just wanted the creature to win and kill them all. There was a brief moment when I thought I was going to get this as their daughter is taken, but they do manage to escape - including the dog. It’s not a satisfying ending - it makes you ask the questions, why and what was the point?

Overall I was not scared at all watching the film, or even entertained, and I feel as though it needed a good few more rewrites to be anything substantial or memorable. As a horror, The Tank fails to fulfil any genre, from thriller to psychological as its storyline is so weak. There’s nothing worse than waiting for something to happen in order to make it better.


Rating The Tank


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