The fear is inescapable and the suspense nonstop in this gripping horror-thriller about six strangers who suddenly awaken in a remote, endless cornfield. Stripped of their possessions, they are left with only six items: a gun with a single bullet, matches, a lantern, a knife, a compass, and a flask of water. As mysterious sirens blare in the distance and traps appear at every turn, the group realizes it’s been plunged into a cat-and-mouse game with an unseen evil, and survival depends upon solving a diabolical — and deadly — puzzle.
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Escape The Field comes to Blu-Ray in a detailed 1080p presentation in its original aspect ratio that truly impresses in high definition. The clarity throughout is outstanding with subtle textures in the vegetation and costumes coming through perfectly. Color saturation is great with the cooler color palette presenting the deeper nuances of the colors well. Skin tones are natural to the lighting conditions, although a lot of exposed skin is covered in all manner of cuts, grime or much worse as the story goes along. True black levels are pretty deep and do not fall victim to any noticeable digital noise or errors of the sort. This is especially helpful considering a large chunk of the film takes place in darkness. Lionsgate Home Entertainment has delivered a strong high definition presentation here.
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is extremely engaging, and it never fails to execute this story perfectly. This film is not meant to be a full-throttle action film, but there are certain kinetic moments that pack a bigger punch than one might expect. Whenever the field is conjuring up some unsettling scenario, the track really digs deep. The soundscape on display here is very rich with the open world displaying noises emanating from numerous directions. Dialogue comes through crystal clear with none of the information feeling lost to the score or the sound effects. The movie uses environmental sounds to great effect, and the track retains strong detail even in the more chaotic developments. There are numerous moments that make good use of the low end. The track is an unexpected powerhouse from start to finish. There are English, English SDH and Spanish subtitles provided.
- Audio Commentary: Producer-Writer-Director Emerson Moore and Writers Joshua Dobkin & Sean Wathen provide a fun commentary track packed with details about the origins of the project, the realities of shooting during a pandemic, finding the right cornfield for the project, the ensemble cast, the elements from WWII that inspired the production design, the Twilight Zone vibes they tried to bring to the story, and much more.
- Pieces of The Puzzle – Making Escape The Field: A pretty solid 24-minute featurette in which the cast and creative team take you through the creation of this feature including the story, the performances in the film, shooting in a real cornfield, how they controlled the tone of the narrative and more. This is fairly meaty for a production of this scale.
Escape The Field is a fairly entertaining puzzle-based horror movie that showcases some notable shortcomings but keeps you invested. The performances are slightly inconsistent with some actors veering into camp more than others, and some plot threads are not resolved in a completely satisfying manner. Yet, the premise and the ability to play detective while trying to crack this movie makes you forgive some of the flaws, especially knowing the limitations of filming a low-budget film during the pandemic. Lionsgate Home Entertainment has released a Blu-Ray with a strong A/V presentation and a few decent supplemental features. The movie is not genuinely great, but those with a soft spot for cryptic horror movies should get something out of this.
Escape The Field is currently available to purchase on Blu-Ray, DVD and Digital.
Note: Images presented in this review are not reflective of the image quality of the Blu-Ray.
Disclaimer: Lionsgate Home Entertainment has supplied a copy of this disc free of charge for review purposes. All opinions in this review are the honest reactions of the author.
Dillon is most comfortable sitting around in a theatre all day watching both big budget and independent movies.