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Horror - Slasher

Vacancy (2007)


Duration 1h 25m Rating (UK) 15
Source of story An original screenplay
Director Nimrod Antal
Writers/Script Mark L. Smith
Starring Kate Beckinsale, Luke Wilson, Frank Waley

Elevator Pitch: David and Amy are going  home after a family gathering. They are at odds after a personal tragedy and are on their way to divorce. On their way they take a wrong turn and end up in the badlands in a downbeat motel with no other guests, but a creepy receptionist.  When they are in their room David puts a tape into the VCR and sees that it is some form of slasher movie, and horror on horrors, it is taking place in their own room. From then on they are attempting to survive as their lives are threatened by masked  men.

Content: There is no nudity or sex, or smoking or drinking. The couple have their doors banged a lot and their phone rings randomly. They watch bits of the films which appear to be a bit blurry and in black and white. At times they attempt to escape but are prevented from getting away by the men in masks. When David manages to get to the payphone he is almost run down by one in a pickup.  When a poiiceman finally arrives they may be saved but their tormenters have other plans.

A View: The critics were divided generally approving about the lack of actual gore but finding the limited plot and poor characterisation worked against it. It is estimated to have cost $19 million, and if they had used unknown actors it would probably have cost $5 million, and it seems to have made a bit of money. It seemed to me that to let an unknown man have a look in the engine compartment of your BMW in the middle of the night was unwise, and that he would have required particular skill to have disabled it still allowing them to drive away. But getting down to cases, the plot was hopeless, so I would not recommend it, even as a free view.

Additional Info: The trailer for the film included a phone number which apparently connected you up to the motel. As the receptionist answered you could hear screaming in the background.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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