Starring: Tara Reid, Cloris Leachman, Joshua Ormond, Bev Appleton, Faust Checho
Directed by: Tom Mattera David Mazzoni
Duration: 95 mins
Reviewed by Guy Adams
â€œBased on true eventsâ€. Was there ever such a chilling statement?
Donâ€™t get me wrong, bizarre and interesting things happen all the time and a goodly chunk of them would make excellent movies. In general though my heart sinks when I see such assurances from a film-maker. No doubt this is a hangover from my childhood response: “Oh… I bet that means there wonâ€™t be any really good monsters then?”
NowÂ I’veÂ grown up I realise that monsters crop up only too frequently in â€˜true eventsâ€™ and the iconic Charles Manson (who hovers over proceedings here, albeit from a distance) was certainly one of them.
The problem with life though is itâ€™s slow and disjointed. Things rarely happen in a truly dramatic fashion. Itâ€™s all uncertainty, awkwardness and long pauses in the middle. The Fields shares this failing. Though it is by no means a bad film it would have benefited from being given a tighter edit and a less realistic grasp on the slow, empty rural life it portrays. Realism is all very well when itâ€™s a potent effect, here it just feels like something that gets in the way of the tension.
The cast make up for a great deal, particularly Joshua Ormond, the filmâ€™s twelve year old star. He gives a quiet, observational performance that keeps you hooked when everything else is just a breeze blowing in the corn. We know thereâ€™s something evil hovering around the farm where heâ€™s staying because he knows and he sells it to us perfectly.
Overall then, a mixture of a film. Itâ€™s worth your time and the good outweighs the bad but prepare yourself for a stroll through the corn rather than a terrifying sprint.