January 30, 2020 Stalked (Movie Review)
There is no way out for one very fierce woman in the Action-Thriller offering Stalked. Uncork’d Entertainment deliver the female-driven fight to Digital and DVD on Tuesday, February 4, 2020.
Fiercely athletic new mom Sam (Rebecca Rogers: The Rebel, the Soldier and the Outcast short 2013, Shadow of the Tomb Raider video game 2018) is kidnapped and awakens to her worst nightmare. Trapped inside a massive, remote factory, she soon realizes that all of the exits are chained and locked—and then she discovers that she’s not alone. A nefarious invisible force is stalking her every move and he wants to play a game that could cost her everything she holds dear. But how do you fight what you cannot see?
Clocking in at 85 minutes, Stalked was Written and Directed by Justin Edgar (We Are the Freaks 2013, The Marker 2017). The film also features the acting talents of Laurence Saunders (The Seasoning House 2012, The Snarling 2018); Nathalie Buscombe (Dead in a Week Or Your Money Back 2018, RED 2 2013); Vanessa Donovan (The Marker 2017, Doctors series); Ian Sharp (Pleasure Island 2015, The Marker 2017); Imogen Irving (Doctors series); Stephen Uppal (Abe short 2017, The Mummy 2017); and, in their acting debuts, Amber Edgar and Billy Cooke.
Considering that she’s often left to fight against an invisible entity, Rogers carries the entire production with her ferocious performance as Sam. Intelligent, skilled like McGuyver, and with all the deadly grace of a panther, Rogers’ character is far from the hyper-emotional, paranoid and neurotic new mother that Hollywood loves to depict. Instead, Sam is confident in her abilities as she delves into the deadly game of outwit and outlast.
Again, as her opponent is often entirely invisible, Rogers is forced to fight against herself and she commits to her role with a feral determination. Her motivation for survival is always clear, and while her plan to achieve her freedom may evolve over time, her perseverance is commendable. These are the clear highlights of Stalked: it’s talented lead actress and her powerful and intelligent character.
Unfortunately, the rest of the film is a mid-level Action-Thriller that is short on real thrills, and suffers from what we will simply term a lack of attention to its details. Its screenplay has several flaws, utterly lacks in character development, and never seems to fully take advantage of the fact that the story occurs almost entirely in one location. None of this is fatal to the film’s enjoyment, however. Instead the most off-putting experiences baked inside Stalked are its very obviously computer-generated explosions and bullets, and some poor fight choreography that leaves the one-on-one action looking like what it is—fake sparring.
Billed as “Cube (1997) and Saw (2003) redesigned as an Action-Thriller,” Stalked never attains the intensity of its forebears and instead feels more like “woman fights to escape invisible enemy in factory.” She fights viciously and intelligently, she never cowers, but she is still merely running around a factory throwing punches at the air. In this, Stalked presents a fierce female lead who is never fully allowed to live up to her potential thanks to the film (and building) that she’s trapped inside.
With passing mentions of quantum physics and a McGuyver-esque heroine, Stalked has the potential to be so much more than it currently is—average. A film that is wholly watchable with definite high points, Cryptic Rock give Stalked 3 of 5 stars.