The Disappointments Room – Review (*)

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A staggeringly inept effort from a host of talented artists, The Disappointments Room checks off genre cliches like its life depends on it, and has little virtue beyond being a merciful 75 minutes long sans credits.

After the accidental death of their infant daughter, Dana (Kate Beckinsale) and husband David (Mel Raido), along with their 5-year-old son Lucas (Duncan Joiner), move into a new fixer-upper home hoping for a new start. However, Dana eventually discovers a room hidden within the house which harbours a dark secret pertaining to past horrors that have taken place there, and finds her family being terrorised by what remains of them.

Yep, this is straight-up generic hokum, and while Beckinsale is nice to look at as usual, that and the short run-time are just about where the praise ends. The script, written by Wentworth Miller of all people, leaves no cliche unmolested as it plows through pretty much every single one in the book, leaving Beckinsale and her co-stars stranded without a creative paddle.

It is never a film that asks the viewer to care, because the tropes are so moldy, the reveals so predictable, and the performances so utterly unfussed and, on occasion, unintentionally amusing. Beckinsale’s lightbulb moment of discovery when she finds out what the titular room contains is by far the most accidentally entertaining part of the movie.

Strangely the room itself is just a small part of the story overall; there’s a bizarre subplot where Dana flirts with her creepy repairman (played by a totally miscast Lucas Till), and her husband is basically a non-character for the most part.

Not content to be merely bland, though, the pic is also horrendously directed by hack-for-hire D.J. Caruso, who once upon a time showed promise with solid vehicles like Disturbia and episodes of The Shield, but is now cranking out anonymous dreck to be lapped up on VOD. One of the year’s worst; a true horror.

*

The Disappointments Room is available now on VOD

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