Writing - 5/10
Directing - 7.5/10
Acting - 5.5/10
Director: Adam Robitel
Writer(s): Braig F. Schut, Maria Melnik
Producer(s): Neal H. Moritz, Ori Marmur
Release Date: January 4, 2019
Escape Room is a fun throwback to old survivor franchises, but it gets ahead of its self by setting up an unnecessary franchise.
User Review( vote)
Where Have We Seen This Before?
Escape Room is the latest horror film to take popular trends and transfer them to the silver screen. This is a fun film for the most part but to some viewers, it may be a trip down memory lane once the movie goes off the rails.
The film puts a group of survivors in a game where they are more than likely going to meet their demise. Much like Saw, The Cabin in the Woods, and Final Destination, there appears to be a puppet master at works, and while that raises several questions for the film it, unfortunately, leads to the worst parts of the movie. However, while it wasn’t all that great, there is still a lot of fun to have with the movie thanks to some of the acting, directing, and cinematography.
What’s The Story?
Directed by Adam Robitel, Escape Room follows a group of six individuals who are all invited to participate in an escape room and the winner receives a $10,000 prize, but once there, they realize that their actions can have deadly consequences. The contest is conducted by a mysterious corporation, MINOS, who send out puzzle box invitations to each participant.
The film’s strongest asset is Robitel’s ability to capture the various rooms at several unique angles; making them appear larger than they are. One space, in particular, featured an upside-down pool room where the floorboards would unexpectedly drop. There is enough suspense to get viewers interested. But at a certain point, the film decides to commit suicide by following several horror cliches; ignoring its own narrative in order to set up a sequel, and making the characters progressively stupid. Speaking of which, the survivors include Zoey, Amanda, Ben, Mike, Danny, and Jason.
The moment these characters are introduced to each other there appears to be a disconnect. It is as if they are forcing themselves to be friendly. As the film progresses, it becomes known that they are all sole survivors of tragedies, which should have killed them but they managed to survive. Upon realizing that they were chosen to see who the “ultimate survivor” is, you would think that they’d like to work together properly. But in traditional survivor film fashion, this does not occur.
Rather than provide answers to questions the film sets up, Escape Room decides to use its remaining time to set up a very forced sequel. And it introduces a contrived villain of sorts. Escape Room’s cast includes Taylor Russell, Logan Miller, Deborah Ann Woll, Jay Ellis, Tyler Labine, and Nik Donadi. No one from the cast stands out, in fact, their acting is average at best. Even the film’s protagonist, Zoe, never solidifies her spot until the credits are about to roll. If you’re expecting to find out how MINOS knew everything about this group of six; then you will have to wait for a follow-up, which is entirely unnecessary.
This is a forgettable movie experience. Thanks to the fact that it starts to not care for what it has already established but puts more effort in setting the groundwork for a franchise. Escape Room will be fun for those that enjoy survivor type horror-thrillers and enjoy suspenseful situations. But it is a cheesy, B- film at best.