Sunday, October 24, 2021

Escape Room Movie Review: When Saw meets The Game

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ESCAPE ROOM movie review is out. Jumping to cash on the escape rooms trend, the movie is directed by Adam Robitel known for INSIDIOUS: THE LAST KEY and THE TAKING OF DEBORAH LOGAN. Is ESCAPE ROOM worth entering, find out in the movie review of ESCAPE ROOM?

Important lesson learnt after watching ESCAPE ROOM
When a slasher like SAW meets THE GAME for PG -13 audience, things are unfortunately not the same.

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What is the story/plotline of ESCAPE ROOM?
A psychological thriller about six strangers who find themselves in circumstances beyond their control and must use their wits to find the clues or die.

Respecting the genre and avoiding to be labeled as a spoiler (The makers had a pre release screening but an embargo on reviews going live only by Friday morning in India after 10:00 a.m) makes sense to them. Anyways, let’s straightaway get into the business. The screenplay, co-credited to Bragi Schut and Maria Melnik, introduces six characters – a physics expert Zoey (Taylor Russell) who gets a gyan on “do something that scares you” over by her professor. Zoey finds a puzzle box and after solving it, secures an invitation to an exclusive escape room event, she welcomes the invitation saying, “This serves as an entry voucher’. Joey is joined by Jason (Jay Ellis), a stockbroker; Ben (Logan Miller), a clerk, Amanda (Deborah Ann Woll), an army veteran suffering from PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder, Mike (Tyler Labine), a truck driver and Danny (Nik Dodani) an escape room addict. The prize for winning is $10,000 and we are hinted at the sequel during the end which is scarier than the movie.

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Level of excitement/thrills/scares in ESCAPE ROOM
As far as the atmosphere and initial set up is concern along with a couple of challenges, Adam Robitel’s ESCAPE ROOM does make some noise and holds your breath. An amount of tension is build for a while as we try to figure out what is the purpose behind this game.

What doesn’t work in ESCAPE ROOM
How much can a SAW type slasher toned down in gore for the PG – 13 audiences that maintains the death count excite and suceed?. Those low budget movies made an impact but here the movie crushes down as it ends and all the atmosphere, settings ends up in sheer routine slasher thing that ‘kills’ the thrills and beats the excitement to death. Yes, like that bar where everything goes upside-down and Petula Clark’s “Downtown” plays on repeat, ESCAPE ROOM goes downhill without much clue and the audience is least bothered who will survive.

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The verdict
Escape Room could have been a new room in the psychological/slasher/thriller genre but Adam Robitel fails to utilize the potential of the premise and gets ‘locked’ in routine, plain mediocrity in the end. Worse, ESCAPE ROOM in its due course somewhere leaves the ‘key’ for salvation of the tortured audience and the characters inside and finds itself ‘Trapped’ in a mist of absurdity.

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