Rattlesnake – USA, 2019 – reviews

‘Time waits for no one’

Rattlesnake is a 2019 American psychological horror feature film in which a single mother accepts the help of a mysterious woman after her daughter is bitten by a rattlesnake but finds herself making an unthinkable deal to repay her debt.

Written and directed by Zak Hilditch (1922; These Final Hours), the movie stars Theo Rossi (Sons of Anarchy; Marvel’s Luke Cage) and Emma Greenwell (Shameless, The Rock). It was produced by Ross Dinerstein (1922; The Package; 6 Balloons).

Plot:

Katrina (Carmen Ejogo) is a single mother driving cross country to start a new life with her young daughter Clara (Apollina Pratt) when their car breaks down in the middle of nowhere. As Katrina changes the tire, Clara wanders off the desert road and is bitten by a venomous rattlesnake.

Desperate to save her daughter’s life, Katrina accepts the help of a mysterious woman, but after she miraculously heals Clara, Katrina is asked to repay the good deed by killing a stranger in exchange for the life saved. Without time to lose, she must wrestle with the morality of who deserves to live and who should die, before her daughter’s life is once again put in peril at sundown…

Rattlesnake - Carmen Ejogo, Spencer Mabrey - Photo Credit: Netflix

Reviews [click links to read more]:

“Katrina can hardly take a life when she does not appear to have one of her own – she barely seems to exist outside the movie, which makes the stakes feel low and our emotional investment seriously superficial. But the direction is also extremely by the book. There’s nothing visually interesting, the editing is unspectacular, the whole thing feels like an example of a movie rather than a movie [insert better movie here].” @ssholes Watching Movies

” …Carmen Ejogo’s performance is uniformly adequate throughout. She is in nearly every frame of the film, and while it isn’t a knockout, her performance is one of the few things not terribly wrong with the film, keeping it going when the script too wanes in the final bits. My final verdict? Avoid it like you would a rattlesnake in the desert.” The Cinemaholic

Rattlesnake - Apollonia Pratt, Carmen Ejogo - Photo Credit: Netflix

Rattlesnake is a banal story that utilizes stellar casting and enough extras in its production to make for an enjoyable watch. Adding to this understated but unnerving supernatural elements that create a haunting veil over the tale, and some blood spilled on the canyon floor, this is a film that’s likely to appease many viewers.” Cryptic Rock

“The film is well made and features an excellent performance by Ejogo, but with so much of it revolving around Katrina pondering what makes a person deserving of death and catching the occasional glimpse of a wandering ghost, Rattlesnake slithers more than it bites. Like the desert’s victims, Hilditch’s film is trapped in a strange purgatory, not boring, but not thrilling, either.” Killer Horror Critic

Rattlesnake - Theo Rossi, Emma Greenwell - Photo Credit: Netflix

“At its peak, Rattlesnake is a gorgeous thriller grappling with the fragility of death. At its valley, it’s a film with unnecessary hospital scenes, a lack of stakes, poor development, and missing the twists that can sometimes be necessary for a thriller. Unfortunately, the movie trends more towards the latter.” Ready Steady Cut!

“Even with a sense of urgency and the length of the movie clocking in at 85 minutes, Netflix’s latest horror Rattlesnake feels far too slow and unfulfilling when the final credits roll. While the movie itself is far from awful, given the interesting themes and compelling lead actress, it also falls flat in offering a decent horror thriller for this Halloween season to sink your teeth into.” The Review Geek

” …even though I had been bored for most of the movie, I still thought Rattlesnake could come together in a way that salvaged what had been lost along the way. It most certainly does not, ending in a way that’s both depressingly predictable and kind of a cop-out in terms of character and storytelling.” RogerEbert.com

Rattlesnake will be streamed as part of the ‘Netflix and Chills’ season on October 25, 2019.

Cast and characters:

  • Carmen Ejogo … Katrina Ridgeway
  • Theo Rossi … Billy
  • Emma Greenwell … Abbie
  • David Yow … Charlie
  • Joy Jacobson … Loraine
  • Arianna Ortiz … Francine
  • Catherine Haun … Loraine’s Sister
  • Debrianna Mansini … The Woman
  • Sean Dillingham … Doctor Hayes
  • Stephanie Hill … Neighbour
  • Jenna Doolittle … Female Nurse
  • Alexandra Nell … Hiker
  • Melissa Chambers … Dishevelled Woman
  • Tim Stafford … Male Nurse
  • Richard Lippert … Dying Man

Image credits: Collider and Netflix

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