31 Days of Reviews: The Disappointments Room (2016)

A move out to the country was supposed to be a fresh start for her family, but old houses come with their fair share of secrets.

Oh man. I really don’t like doing reviews like this. I genuinely don’t. I prefer to gush about all of the good things in a film. It pains me to do a lot of these negative reviews. Unfortunately, here we are.

Similar to my experience while reviewing The Darkness, I went into The Disappointments Room knowing that it had really negative reviews. I do like Kate Beckinsale though, so I wanted to give it a shot. I really wasn’t prepared for what I was going to get through this movie. Unfortunately, its title is not the only place where you’ll find disappointment.

Screen Shot 2017-10-22 at 12.14.26 PM

The Disappointments Room is directed by D.J. Caruso. It stars Kate Beckinsale, Mel Raido, and Duncan Joiner. It also features roles by Lucas Till, Gerald McRaney, Celia Weston, and Michaela Conlin.

My worries about this movie started very early. In the first scene, the main characters are riding in a car toward their new home. It was odd. I wasn’t feeling any chemistry between the characters. I wasn’t invested in Kate Beckinsale’s character because it didn’t feel like she was invested in it herself. The dialogue was awkward. The edits during the scene didn’t really help to alleviate my worry about any of these factors.

As the movie progressed, some of these problems resolved themselves, but the same feeling remained. The dialogue continues to be awkward. When it comes to the part where the main character figures out the history of her home, it’s very exposition heavy. I wish they had taken a different approach when it came to that. That’s just one example.

The characters continue to be unlikable on the whole. It’s hard to really see any chemistry between the husband and wife. When Lucas Till’s character gets involved, it gets even more painful. It’s just so hard to understand anyone’s motivations through the duration of the movie. This makes it hard to follow.

The story itself doesn’t help. There isn’t a whole lot going on. The story revolving around a disappointments room has the potential to be really interesting and emotional, but I just feel like this one missed the mark entirely. The ending really got me. It’s confusing. What really happens to Lucas Till’s character? Was anything real? Why does it escalate so quickly?

I hate that I have to keep making this reference, but The Disappointments Room really is a disappointment. Is this what a mainstream horror film is these days? I’ve seen so many indie films that are equivalent, even superior, in every way. It’s unfortunate in the case of this movie, but it shows that films can’t be saved by an A-List actor at the head.

I will give a few positives here. This movie has some good cinematography, and it has some pretty amazing set design. It looks good. It’s just unfortunate that it wasn’t enough to make up for the flaws that it had.

Overall, The Disappointments Room is a movie that I’d recommend skipping. There isn’t too much going for it to really make it memorable or even fun to watch. If you’re looking for a fun haunted house type movie, there are definitely better options out there.

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