Water Bugger

In its final act, The Tank showcases an elegant, eye-less, and entirely practical monster design. Few shots ever betray reality, the hunched over look on par with multiple moments in the classic Alien and Aliens. Unfortunately, it takes some 70-minutes to get there.

This is common in independent horror, mirroring the Jaws approach of keeping the creature off-screen. Like so many, The Tank fails to understand why Jaws pulled that off. A kitschy anti-government parable and joyously mismatched characters proved compelling. The Tank lacks that people factor.

For the final half hour, The Tank is worth a look

What’s here in The Tank is family drama, dating back a generation, and a forgotten opening act. Jules (Luciane Buchanan) and Ben (Matt Whelan) run a financially failing pet store, which apparently they can leave to visit Ben’s mother’s isolated Colorado cabin. The pet shop is purely to put onus on the characters so they’ll logically ditch their business for the duration.

The Tank then unravels the ancestral drama, at one point making a truthfully dramatic point about grief and loss (Ben unable to grasp his mother’s past) before continuing with old dark house genre tropes. The Tank features too many false starts, becoming an irritant. A fantastic set-up finds the monsters under the floor, poking through the carpet. But then The Tank moves on without so much as an attack, just jump scares.

People write-off the creature attack movie as mindless. That’s often true, but if they find purpose, the sci-fi/horror creative process can find motive and authentic drama under the raw fiction. The Tank is not one of those, as it’s desperate for a hook beyond a husband and wife trapped in a rotting home. Whatever the first act attempts to build on fails when it exists only to drive exposition.

For the final half hour, The Tank is worth a look, purely for the effective scares and grand all-practical effects. Suits and puppets are beginning to turn into a marketing hook; they’re a release from the CG-laden studio films. The Tank goes that route too, but primarily because that’s all it can offer.


An excellent digital transfer isn’t perfect, but it’s in the ballpark. Noise is a near constant, but it’s never made worse by the encode. Banding appears in flashlight beams, the worst problem facing The Tank on Blu-ray. The rest displays excellent sharpness and definition. Facial texture looks great in close, and while wide shots of the secluded home struggle to keep the same zip, it’s passable considering the available resolution.

Most of the color drains during the grading process, reducing The Tank to mostly greens and blues. Primaries never stand a chance. In terms of presenting the look as intended though, Well Go’s disc won’t cause any issues. The occasionally overwhelming teal tint doesn’t let compression show. Flesh tones breathe for a few minutes at best during the runtime.

Contrast loses oomph due to the teal-ish push, never achieving full white unless in fire/flame. The cooled aesthetic allows brightness in though, giving The Tank dimension when against the mostly solid black levels.


Well Go offers a stereo mix; it’s possible that was the budget-conscious choice, but a DTS-HD 5.1 mix is a better selection. While not the widest soundstage, channel separation provides enough ambiance and chills to work some magic. The creaking house always sounds as if it’s moving, and doors shut in specific speakers. The monster itself growls in every channel before its initial arrival, an effective way to build tension.

LFE sadly isn’t much of a factor. The final act includes some monster attacks that slam on doors and break wood, but the effect is slim.


Just two EPK featurettes, one generalized, the other about the monster. Together they total about eight minutes.

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided by the label for review. This has not materially affected DoBlu’s editorial process. For information on how we handle all review material, please visit DoBlu’s about us page.

The Tank
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The Tank seems hesitant to ever progress to the monster action, and only a deadened family mystery carries the story until then.

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The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 31 full resolution, uncompressed HD screen shots ripped directly from the Blu-ray:

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