Running Time: 94 mins.
Where Can You See It?: Netflix
Premise: Goreng (Ivan Massague) wakes up in a vertical prison that puts two people per level with an unknown number of levels. Each day, a single platform of food for all of them is lowered down to each level for two minutes. The lower your level, the less food you get. Let the games of survival of the fittest begin.
Behind-the-Scenes: Netflix acquired the rights to this Spanish film, originally titled El hoyo. This is director Galder Gastelu-Urrutia’s first feature-length directing credit.
The Good: The Platform has a killer concept that is expertly executed. It does a fantastic job of world-building with minimal effort and no wasted time. I was immediately hooked – from the first minute to the last frame. The production design of the vertical prison and falling platform is ingeniously realized, and really shows what talented filmmakers can achieve even on a limited budget. The actors – all unknown to me – are believable and give committed performances. The story lends itself to a mix of genres, including thriller, horror, and sci-fi, so it offers a bit of everything to genre fans. The social allegory is timely and clever, offering an entertaining indictment of capitalism and the resulting economic injustice.
The Bad: It’s not exactly a subtle film in terms of that social allegory. It has a lot of visual levels, but not so many thematic ones. The third act promises big action, but goes out with more of a whimper than a bang and doesn’t quite nail the landing. Could be due to some of its budget constraints.
Should You See It?: Yes. This is the perfect Friday night flick for more adventurous moviegoers. It won’t play to everyone’s tastes, but genre fans should definitely check it out. And, if they ever do an American remake (not that one is needed), Jordan Peele would be perfect for it.
Star Rating: **** out of 5 stars
Better Than: High Rise
Worse Than: The Raid
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