'Run' is a Lean, Mean 90-Minute Thriller title_ext

Run movie poster

Sarah Paulson and Kiera Allen deliver fierce performances in the claustrophobic thriller Run, an exciting and entertaining experience that’s worth its lean 90-minute runtime. 

Allen plays Chloe, a wheelchair-bound teenager who, aside from paralysis of the legs, suffers from a variety of other maladies that keeps her under the close watch of her loving but overly protective mother (Paulson). When she stumbles upon a dark secret, however, Chloe must fight to survive.

Allen, who uses a wheelchair in real-life, is absolutely spectacular in Run, presenting a complex and believable character who is smart, resourceful, and defiant in all the ways you typically don’t see people with disabilities portrayed in mainstream films (it was set to debut theatrically before the pandemic drove it to Hulu). Paulson, of course, is terrific as well, but it’s the unknown Allen who delivers emotionally commanding surprises at every turn.

Powered by its outstanding primary cast of two, Run is an immediately engrossing and gripping thriller that maintains momentum until the very end. Writer/director Aneesh Chaganty does a superb job of stacking the story as it develops, carefully laying the groundwork for the disturbing mystery at hand. While one could quibble over the details, each scene is well-staged, providing a fine level of suspense while subsequently building toward something greater.

Similar to Chaganty’s previous effort, the surprisingly effective Searching, the journey is more enjoyable than the payoff. While still entertaining, the third act doesn’t work quite as well as the rest of the movie, with Chaganty abandoning the claustrophobic confines of the house and, to some degree, taking the reins away from her protagonist. It’s fine, but the movie would have been better served with a simpler, more believable, and frankly more satisfying finale.

The movie would have also benefited had the final scene been deleted altogether.

Despite its stumbles towards the end, Run is a fast-paced, highly entertaining thriller that deserves to be seen. Paulson and especially Allen are incredible, their performances elevating the already engrossing material.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.


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