Terror on the Prairie review: A respectable return for Gina Carano

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Techaeris Rated 8.2/10

Unfortunately, Terror on the Prairie is more than likely going to be judged through the lenses of opposing political views. I’m not going to go into the backstory of how this movie came to be and why it turned out that way. The most pertinent piece of information, I think, is known by most.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

It was uncertain what her next project might be after Disney dismissed Gina Carano from its popular The Mandalorian series. Carano’s character Cara Dune proved one of that series’s most popular characters. Carano was also featured in Deadpool, portraying the character Angel Dust and starred in the action-thriller Haywire.

WARNING: There may be spoilers ahead.

Terror on the Prairie Cast

Gina CaranoHattie McAllister
Nick SearcyThe Captain
Donald CerroneJeb McAllister
Tyler FischerLong Hair
Gabriel-Kane Day-LewisThe Kid
Matthius HuesMr. Samuelson
Heath FreemanGold Tooth
Rhys Jackson BeckerWill McAllister

Carano plays Hattie McAllister in Terror on the Prairie. Jeb McAllister has taken his family to Montana to homestead and escape his past. While Hattie is aware of Jeb’s past, she’s unaware of its totality. Jeb’s past comes back to haunt him in the form of The Captain (played by Nick Searcy) and his bandits. Hattie must fight for her life and the lives of her two small children. Jeb must eventually face his past, and the couple must defeat evil together.

The opening sequence of the movie was brilliant. It sets the tone very much and slaps you in the face with The Captain’s brutality. But I was slightly deflated when we moved to the McAllister’s homestead. While I didn’t expect the tone to be the same, I found the portrayal of the McAllister’s lives not well written. The dialogue is minimal, and I think the filmmakers tried to convey some of the story through visuals and actions.

With the lack of substantial and informative dialogue, I felt the first act lacked in keeping my interest. Given Carano’s previous roles and the fact that she’s used to be an ex-UFC fighter, I thought she struggled to come across as a damsel in distress. Grant it; some of that is my perception, having followed Carano for a while now and being accustomed to her typical characters. So I give her kudos for taking on something different.

The dialogue eventually did come, but much slower than I would have liked. I think the script could have been fleshed out more and given us more of a backstory on some of these characters. It eventually gets there but not until later in the film. Carano’s performance was more robust once her character in Terror on the Prairie was battling for her life.

However, Nick Searcy as The Captain makes Terror on the Prairie worth watching. His performance was brilliant. Everything from his accent to his mannerisms makes you loathe his character. I may be wrong, but I feel like The Captain had more dialogue than any other character, which is partly why Searcy’s performance carried the film.

Overall, I think this was a great effort by the filmmakers and a respectable return for Gina Carano. The story was interesting, and I think the writers could have fleshed out a bit more backstory and added more dialogue. Searcy’s villain was well written and well-acted. I’m sure budget constraints kept the filmmakers from adding more secondary characters and more of a backstory, so Terror on the Prairie scores an 8.2 out of 10. It will be interesting to see what The Daily Wire has coming from its originals arsenal next.

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Last Updated on June 16, 2022.

Terror on the Prairie

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Overall Score

8.2/10

Nailed it

  • Great shooting location and backdrop in Montana
  • Excellent cinematography
  • Opening sequence was outstanding
  • Nick Searcy puts in the best performance of the film
  • Gina Carano's performance started slow but she pulls it together once the script allows her more dialogue

Needs work

  • The pacing of the film after the opening felt slow
  • The script could have been fleshed out a bit more
  • More dialogue and character development was needed
Terror on the Prairie Review Techaeris-min
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