02 July 2011

Movies: The Resident

The Resident (2011) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1334102/

Billed as a Horror/Thriller. They forgot a few key words in that billing.

The film is about a young doctor that gets a new apartment after breaking up with her boyfriend. She gets an incredibly priced deal for a huge apartment in a building that's seemingly occupied only by a friendly handsome landlord and his grandfather.  At night she hears strange noises, we get camera angles that are indicative of someone spying through mirrors and peepholes.

Stars Hilary Swank as the doctor, you'll probably remember her from many films in the past few years. Jeffrey Dean Morgan is the landlord, you'll probably remember him as the Comedian in The Watchmen. Christopher Lee as the grandfather, he's been around forever and you've seen him in plenty of things. Lee Pace is the ex-boyfriend. Who? If you watched the short-lived Pushing Daisies he was Ned the piemaker. Glad to see he's getting more work. He isn't around much in the film to really judge how he's doing is his non-pie-making role. But I really liked Pushing Daisies.

Now, one would think that a strong core cast like that would be a good solid base for a film.
But take this into consideration: It went straight to video.
Yeah. I know! A good core cast and it goes straight to video?
Unfortunately for me I didn't know that tidbit of information until after I watched it.  Lucky for you, you are reading this now.

If you have ever seen any film that involves someone hiding in a house/crawlspace peeping in on someone, obsessing about them, stalking them, getting all weird and crap, you have pretty much already seen this movie.  There will be no surprises.

Now - the cast does fine in their roles. The movie is technically filmed well, edited okay for the most part. There was one reference to something that supposedly happened that I missed, so either the scene was edited out or my brain had already fallen asleep from boredom and missed it.  No - I didn't fall asleep. My eyes were open the whole time. But I did say boredom. Nothing new at all in the plot. It is so much like many of its similarly themed predecessors. I admit I did watch the whole thing, sort of out of curiosity and hope that there would be something redeeming about the film. Nope.

Tell you what - if you have never seen a film that involves obsessive stalker creeping into a tenant's apartment, or someone's house, or whatnot. Go ahead, watch it. You'll get to see all of the obsessive creeping in residence stalker films ever made all rolled up into one film.


Oh yeah - the key words missing from the film type of "Horror/Thriller"?
Boring. Recycled. Tired. Premise.

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 I hate getting so negative, especially when I like the cast. But jeez.
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Just so this isn't a total loss, give Pushing Daisies a look-see. It's funny, it's quirky, and the cast really makes the show.  It's like a pop-up story book on TV. It lasted 2 seasons, well, actually half and a one. The writer's strike kinda killed it mid first season. ABC put it into scheduling hell after that and it never really recovered.
In addition to Lee Pace it stars Anna Friel, Kristen Chenoweth and Chi McBride. Plus it has Swoozie Kurtz - and she is awesome. The guest-stars in various episodes help make the series too.
** ah shoot - it used to be streaming on Netflix, but it isn't any longer. The DVDs are still available. It's a shame, though, I wanted me some instant PD.

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