Gerald’s Game: The Perfect Horror Movie for Halloween Season


Vera Targoff

The movie Gerald’s Game is based on the book by Stephen King.

Aviv Yaacobi, Contributing Writer

Everyone is focusing on IT, but there is one other horror movie that they should be watching. Gerald’s Game is the newest Stephen King adaptation, released as a Netflix exclusive.

Gerald’s Game is directed by Mike Flanagan and co-written by Flanagan and Jeff Howard. In the movie, a couple goes out to the middle of nowhere to a cabin on a lake. Gerald, played by Bruce Greenwood, suffers a heart attack, leaving his wife, played by Carla Gugino, to fend for herself while stuck where Gerald left her in the bedroom. The house’s door is open and there’s a hungry dog outside. Her inner demons are coming out—maybe the seemingly empty house isn’t so empty.

Because the film is shot mostly in one location, the director had to get creative, and he definitely does. Since you don’t know if Jessie will make it, the movie feels tense.

There is not a whole lot of music, but in the quiet you hear the chains of the handcuffs trapping Jessie being pulled as she tries to escape. This is just one way that the movie projects an uneasy feeling on the viewer. Even before the real drama starts, the film has an apprehensive feel, like something is just not right. You can see that the couple is unhappy in the beginning, and you feel like at any second something sinister might happen.

Flashbacks are used to get the viewer inside Jessie’s mind, which is also unnerving. Gore is used very well in the movie, especially close to the end. Be warned if you are squeamish, since it can get pretty sickening. And there are barely any jump scares, which makes the times jump scares are used even more startling.

Carla Gugino is amazing in this movie. She has to sell the entire film, and she does so with flying colors. Every time she struggles, you can’t help but feel sympathetic. There is no real moment when you want to yell at her like you might want to yell at the characters of other horror movies, since she tries everything that you might think of to escape.

The only bad part of the film is the end—it’s over so quickly. Something like that might work in a book, but not in a movie adaptation.

I knew almost nothing going into this movie, and that only made me love it more, so I don’t want to go into too much depth and ruin it for you. If you’re up for the gore and looking for a scary movie this Halloween season, make sure you check out Gerald’s Game on Netflix.

This piece also appears in our October print edition.