The one thing indie horror films have a ton of now are the single location thriller. If you can trap a group of people into one location you can save a lot of time, and money, when it comes to production. If you have a budget, however, and want to play with the single location format what would be the thing to do?
Make your single location a sequence of rooms with the stakes increasing with each room.
Escape Room takes the concept of the latest suburban craze, the Escape Room, and adds an element of danger to it. A group of strangers with dark pasts come together for the chance to beat an escape room and win $10,000. They think it’s a game until people start dying. From there it’s all about survival.
And this is where the film is genuinely engaging. A group of strangers, all with issues, coming together to problem solve is where this film shines. With an interesting cast given meaty archetypes to play with there’s something genuinely interesting happening here. As they continue to make it through each room, and people wind up dead, Escape Room defies the odds of being a theatrical release in January to make you think that this could be a genuinely great film.
Then you see the curtain drop, and the antagonist reveals themselves, and Escape Room winds up going from potentially an updated version of The Game into just another film taking a popular thing and adding a body count.
With a film that ends setting up a sequel, and the box office returns not necessarily dictating it, Escape Room winds up as a brilliant idea that collapses on itself once the question of “Why is someone doing this?” is answered.
An EPK piece, some deleted scenes and your typical DVD extras highlight an otherwise unremarkable DVD.
Columbia Pictures presents Escape Room/i>. Directed by Adam Robitel. Written by Brad Schut and Maria Melnik. Starring Taylor Russell, Logan Miller, Deborah Ann Woll, Jay Ellis, Tyler Labine, Nik Dodani. Run Time: 108 minutes Rated R. Released on DVD:
Tags: Deborah Ann Woll, Jay Ellis, Logan Miller, Nik Dodani, Taylor Russell, Tyler Labine