The Tank Is a Really Fun Creature Feature

Image provided by Well Go USA

I’m a sucker for monster movies. If a film gives me a fantastical creature (or creatures!) attacking a group of helpless humans, I’m more than happy to give it a shot. So naturally, when I first saw the trailer for The Tank, I knew I had to check this movie out. It looked like the kind of awesome creature feature I can never get enough of, so I requested a screener as soon as I could. I was really excited to give this movie a watch, and after finally getting the chance to see it, I’m happy to say I enjoyed it quite a bit.

The Tank was written and directed by Scott Walker, and it stars Luciane Buchanan, Matt Whelan, Zara Nausbaum, Regina Hegemann, Jack Barry, and Holly Shervey. It’s about a guy named Ben, his wife Jules, and their daughter Reia, a pretty ordinary family who one day come face to face with a group of extraordinary monsters. See, Ben recently lost his mother, and one day, out of the blue, he learns that he’s inherited a piece of property he never even knew his parents owned. It’s a remote house in the countryside, so he takes his wife and daughter there to check the place out. At first, it seems really nice, but soon enough, he realizes that the property is home to a group of deadly monsters that have terrorized his family since before he was born.

For about the first hour or so, The Tank is a bit of a slow burn. It gives us a few horror scenes here and there (especially once we hit the 30-minute mark), but by and large, this part of the film just follows Ben, Jules, and Reia as they explore their new property and learn more about the house. It’s almost entirely character-driven, and thankfully, these main characters are a pleasure to watch.

A scared girl
Image provided by Well Go USA

Actors Luciane Buchanan, Matt Whelan, and Zara Nausbaum play their roles super well, so I had no trouble at all believing that they really were a loving family. Granted, they weren’t quite good enough to hook me in right from the very first frame of the movie, but they won me over pretty quickly. It only took me a few minutes to get on board with them, and once that happened, I enjoyed watching them go about their normal, everyday lives.

But don’t get the wrong idea. While this part of The Tank doesn’t have too much horror, the little bit it does give us is pretty good. It does a nice job of whetting your appetite for what’s to come, so you can’t help but wonder what these mysterious monsters could be. In particular, there’s a scene at about the half-hour mark that I thought was really cool. It lets us hear the creatures without seeing them, and unsurprisingly, the mystery of what’s behind those disembodied noises is way creepier than any images the movie could’ve shown us.

All that being said, I do have to point out one flaw with this first hour of the film. As much as I enjoyed seeing these characters go about their normal lives, I thought the setup went on just a tiny bit too long. I began to get a little bored after about 45 minutes or so, and I found myself checking my watch a few times and wondering when I’d finally get to the good stuff.

Thankfully though, I didn’t have to wait too long. That good stuff finally came at around the one-hour mark, and it totally delivered. Sure, the final 40 minutes of The Tank aren’t exactly groundbreaking, but it’s everything a monster movie should be. The creatures look cool, the action is fun, and I was really invested in whether the characters made it out alive.

A scared woman and child
Image provided by Well Go USA

But hands down, the best thing about the final act of The Tank is the way it makes you feel the threat of these creatures even when they’re not on screen. Just the mere possibility that they may be lurking around the corner is enough to put you on the edge of your seat, and when you know they’re around but you can’t see them, that threat and the tension it creates increase exponentially.

And the way I see it, that’s exactly what a monster movie should do. See, you don’t want to show the monsters so much they become overly familiar, but you also don’t want to hide them so much that the focus shifts away from them. A good creature feature has to find a way to avoid both of those pitfalls, and The Tank navigates that middle ground really well. It makes its monsters scary enough that you feel their presence regardless of whether they’re actually around or not, so once the horror hits, it doesn’t let up until the final scene.

So if you’re looking for some good new horror to watch, I definitely recommend checking out The Tank. It doesn’t reinvent the monster wheel, and it does drag a bit towards the end of the first hour, but there’s more than enough good in it to make it a winner in my book. In particular, the cool monster mayhem and the likable characters make this film a real joy to watch, so do yourself a favor and check this one out.

The Tank is set to come out in limited theaters on April 21, and then it’ll be hitting VOD on April 25.

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Written by JP Nunez

JP Nunez is a lifelong horror fan. From a very early age, he learned to love monsters, ghosts, and all things spooky, and it's still his favorite genre today.

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