Florida is preparing itself for the arrival of a category five hurricane. As competitive swimmer Haley Keller (Kaya Scodelario) changes after a session in the pool, she takes a video call from her sister, concerned that she can’t get through to their father (Barry Pepper) by phone. Dad still lives in their old hometown, right in the path of the incoming storm, and Haley agrees to go check on him.
As she approaches the town, the authorities try to turn her back as everyone is currently being evacuated from their homes. But Haley slips through via a side road, determined to check on dad, and when she does find him, he’s in a spot of trouble – injured and in the crawl space beneath their house. Turns out dad wasn’t alone though and a couple of gators, having found their way in with the storm, are preventing Haley and Dad from getting out. As the storm intensifies and the flood waters rise, the father and daughter must outwit the predators and try to escape to safety before they either drown or get eaten.
And that is pretty much it. At just 87 minutes long, Crawl wastes no time in getting to the action and manages to keep the suspense and thrills going right to the very end. The gators are terrifyingly realistic, as are the flood and hurricane effects, and I was just on the edge of my seat throughout.
Apart from the occasional human showing up to provide the gators with something to munch on, Haley and her dad are pretty much the only characters in the movie, with Haley making good use of her swimming skills and proving herself to be a real badass. The family dog is also on hand, getting himself into the odd scrape too. Spoiler alert: the doggy survives, so don’t worry.
I absolutely loved this movie. It had me gripped throughout, with a real gut wrenching intensity, and I love it when a movie does that to me. Crawl is definitely in my top 5 movies this year.