Lock It Up And Throw Away The Key
Poor Naomi Watts! She plays a recently widowed shrink who has to look after a stepson who has been rendered catatonic in the accident that killed her husband. Not only is she alone, but is traumatised by a missing patient (the boy you have seen in the Oscar winning movie ‘The Room).
As her fears grow, you wish there weren’t so many sudden loud noises, creaking doors and hiding in the closet scenes to make you yawn through this silly scare flick.
Naomi Watts must have realised at some point that her terrified face can only do so much to keep the audience interested in this cliche ridden tale of horrors.
Creaking doors, suddenly shutting doors, howling wind, rattling windowpanes, horrible dreams from which you awake with a sudden start, needless walking outside searching for the ‘boy’... the cliches are endless. And you hate it when you yawn loudly at yet another hide-in-the-closet or something is in the closet scene.
Oh yes, not to forget how the storm outside is going to mean power cut and if it is wintertime in Maine, then it would be blue-white snow covered rural scenes, with scary leafless trees looming like ghostly arms reaching out to you, should you decide to wander about in the night. And she does! She is searching for her missing patient, a young deaf boy who has run away from his foster home. Of course there will be raccoons who scare the heck out of her (but not you, the audience) and you feel for her - am sure she did not know it would be such a tiresome laughable script - because she’s earnest. But then there are a whole lot more questions than scares. The biggest one? She’s forever skyping with her shrink (Oliver Platt) telling him her fears and he diagnoses her problem over skype! Now would you want your shrink who needs a shrink herself?
Jacob Tremblay is not getting typecast. Soon he’ll be relegated to B-grade horror films (which this one is, alas!) wandering about houses like a ghost, looking lost, staring at houses and people and things creepily....
And Hollywood! No matter how fetching the heroine and her winter wardrobe is, we the audience are fed of scenes that take you into their closets. I said that before? The director repeats such scenes so many times, you want to whack everyone in the head and ask, ‘If you are so paranoid about ‘something scary is in there’, then shouldn’t you be running away from the cupboard/closet instead of investigating it?’ And that The Conjuring has already done and dusted with the clapping from the cupboard scene.
The movie gives you ample time to count creaking doors. It works like counting sheep… This film is that much of a yawn.
(This review appears on nowrunning dot com)