Originally released in 2014 as a short film, Night Swim is a ridiculous story about a haunted swimming pool capable of killing people. Based on a short story by Rod Blackhurst, the scares are supposed to be central to the story. Unfortunately, the scares aren’t that scary or frequent enough. Written and directed by Bryce McGuire (Unfollowed), this Blumhouse production offers up awkward dialogue and a tepid backstory. Apart from Kerry Condon (nominated for an Oscar last year for her work in The Banshees of Inisherin) the acting is stale and one note.

Showing early signs of Multiple Sclerosis, Major League baseball player Ray Waller (Wyatt Russell) is forced to retire. He moves into a new house in the suburbs of Minneapolis with his wife Eve (Condon), his teenage daughter Izzy (Amelie Hoeferle) and his young son Eliot (Gavin Warren). The home has a backyard swimming pool that Ray intends to use for therapy. The water does help Ray, while the rest of the family see weird figures in and around the pool when they use it. Eliot even talks to the voice of a little girl coming from one of the figures. The family is unaware of the homes dark past. After contacting the previous owners, the Waller’s learn that the pool killed a child back in 1992.

An evil entity gets into the pool through its water supply. A premise so ridiculous it unfurls like a comedy rather than a horror film. Made even sillier by the need for a sacrifice and the over the top acting. Filled with clichés from much better horror films, the laziness of the script is annoying. The big finale, featuring two characters wrestling with a pool cover is ridiculous and without tension. The only saving grace here is Kerry Condon, who offers enough sincerity to make Night Swim almost watchable.

Presented in the 2.39:1 aspect ratio, the presentation is well rendered. There are occasional moments of softness, but overall the image looks accurate. There is no apparent shimmering or other image flaws. Like most horror films, Night Swim favors an amber and teal color scheme that looks appropriate throughout. Blacks are deep and inky.

The DTS-HD MA 7.1 soundtrack is solid as well. Given the nature of the story, atmospherics take center stage. The track is relatively involving throughout. The “scare moments” are active and full. Music is employed to help create a believable atmosphere. Dialogue is clean, clear and concise.

English, Spanish and French subtitles are available.

The following extras are included:

  • Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Bryce McGuire
  • “Masters of Fear” Featurette (HD, 6:45)
  • “Demons from the Depths” Featurette (HD, 7:16)
  • “Into the Deep” Featurette (HD, 5:50)
  • “Marco Polo” Featurette (HD, 4:04)
  • DVD Copy
Night Swim (2024)
2.9 Reviewer