MIDNIGHT IN THE SWITCHGRASS (2021) Reviews of serial killer thriller

 

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Midnight in the Switchgrass is a 2021 American thriller about an ​investigation into a string of unsolved murder cases. Based on the true story of Texas’ most dangerous serial killer.

Directed by Randall Emmett – making his directorial debut – from a screenplay written by Alan Horsnail (The Fortress). Co-produced by Randall Emmett, George Furla, Alex Eckert and Timothy C. Sullivan.

The Emmett Furla Oasis Films-Pimenta-BondIt Media Capital co-production stars Bruce Willis (Out of Death; Hard Kill; Cosmic SinBreachDie Hard franchise), Megan Fox (Till Death; Rogue; Jennifer’s Body), Emile Hirsch, Colson Baker aka Machine Gun Kelly and Lukas Haas (Browse; The Tripper; Mars Attacks!; Lady in White).

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Plot:

FBI agent Karl Helter (Bruce Willis) and his partner Rebecca Lombardi (Megan Fox) are very close to busting a human-trafficking ring. When they realise their investigation has crossed the path of a brutal serial killer, they team up with Texas Ranger Byron Crawford (Emile Hirsch) who has years on this case.

When Rebecca herself is abducted by their target and her life hangs in the balance, Karl and Byron have a precious few hours to piece together the last clues and put an end to the infamous ‘Truck Stop Killer’…

Reviews:

“The real reason to watch is the outstanding performance by Emile Hirsch and the creepiness of Lukas Haas. Hirsch is on fire as the determined Florida cop hell-bent on solving a series of grizzly murders and Haas pushes his creep meter to a 10. Midnight in the Switchgrass is a solid psychological thriller. It does not reinvent anything, but it tells an interesting story.” Bulletproof Action

“Leering point-of-view shots, distracting filters and tedious montages seem designed to stretch things out and make the whole experience more turgid, robbing Midnight in the Switchgrass of tension and forward momentum. It is also clumsily edited, with pointless insert shots of the titular switchgrass and some (mercifully brief) action sequences that offer neither a coherent space nor a visceral thrill. Add all this incompetence together and you have a thriller that fails to deliver thrills or atmosphere, while also presenting some depressingly retrograde attitudes.” The Critical Critics

” …it isn’t a Fincher film, hence don’t expect a captivating thrill and threat. Emmett’s tale and direction are much simpler and sometimes a bit tasteless.” Digital Mafia Talkies

“Nearly solid post-90s cop investigation film. Strangely this might be Willis‘ most efficient performance in ages (probably because he is in this for only like four mins). I wouldn‘t be much surprised if MGK‘s and Fox‘s conversations sometimes take place like this in real. Hirsch delivered one of the funniest f-bombs in I don’t know how long.” Linufoe

” …an average film whose first hour is held together by some decent direction and some good performances from Fox and Hirsch […]. Haas, while not a particularly imposing presence is quite creepy […]  Willis once again makes an extended cameo, delivering a few lines in a couple of scenes. But that’s fine because Midnight in the Switchgrass’ story belongs to Fox and Hirsch’s characters and they do a good enough job of telling it without him.” Voices from the Balcony

Release date:

In the USA, Lionsgate releases Midnight in the Switchgrass theatrically on July 23rd 2021.

In the UK, Lionsgate UK releases Midnight in the Switchgrass on Digital Download on 13th August and DVD on 16th August.

Cast and characters:

Bruce Willis … Karl Helter
Megan Fox … Rebecca Lombardi
Emile Hirsch … Byron Crawford
Lukas Haas … Peter
Caitlin Carmichael … Tracey
Olive Elise Abercrombie … Bethany
Jason Trawick … Bartender
Lydia Hull … Karen
Welker White … Ms. Georgia Kellogg
Alec Monopoly … Suspect / Tall Man
Jackie Cruz … Suzanna
Sergio Rizzuto … Beau
Tyler Jon Olson … Fred
Nick Koskoff … Drunk Biker (as Nicholas Koskoff)
Katalina Viteri … Chasity
Swen Temmel … Local Police Officer Gary
Adam Huel Potter … Heavy Trucker (as Adam Potter)
Sistine Rose Stallone … Heather (as Sistine Stallone)
Michael Beach … Detective Yarbrough
Bobbie Shaw Chance … Barbara (as Bobby Chance)
Samiah Alexander … Claudia
Donovan W. Carter … Lieutenant Gilbright (as Donovan Carter)
Daniel Cates … Young Roughneck
Christopher Gehrman … Salesman
Alex Eckert … Jimmy
Celeste Fianna … Waitress
Charlie Alvarado … Chuck
Eric Halem … Drunk Man

Filming locations:

Puerto Rico

Technical details:

99 minutes

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Fun facts:

Emile Hirsch, Bruce Willis and Lukas Haas previously appeared in Alpha Dog (2006).

Megan Fox and Colson Baker aka Machine Gun Kelly are apparently in a relationship in real life.

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Red band trailer: