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Adam Robitel is an emerging player in the world of scary movies, having had a success with his found-footage chiller for Netflix entitled The Taking of Deborah Logan, as well as a film in the Insidious franchise. Here he turns in a nifty, nasty high-concept horror, with dabs of Saw and Final Destination.
A handful of people, with no knowledge of or connection with each other, receive a strange box and a note inviting them to participate in an escape room challenge in a bland, featureless office building in downtown Chicago. The winner gets $10,000. The players are shy student Zoey (Taylor Russell), convenience-store worker Ben (Logan Miller), army vet Amanda (Deborah Ann Woll), overweight schlub Mike (Tyler Labine), nerdy gamer Danny (Nik Dodani), and arrogant financial trader Jason (Jay Ellis).
Once the proceedings start, the stunned contenders realise that it is lethally dangerous, impossible to quit mid-game, and each room has details and clues tailored to traumas in everyone’s past. And so the games-master’s creepy sadistic personality emerges in this ordeal, enigmatically and indirectly.
As they stagger from one room to the next, there is grisly Alice in Wonderland surrealism in the bizarre differentness of each: a dull reception area, a log cabin, a bar and even a vast wintry outdoor scene. (How is this last one even possible?)
A very cinematic spatial impossibility is conjured up by Robitel as he allows the audience to ponder how exactly these rooms are supposed to fit together. The film has a vicious streak of throwaway black comedy.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Escape Room review – grisly and surreal high-concept horror | Horror films