Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Innkeepers

Directed by: Ti West

Release Date: 2011/2

Having been a fan of West's work since House of the Devil, The Innkeepers release was exciting. However, the anticipation of the film was better than the film itself. The ultimate result of the final product was soporific, ridiculously slow, with no payoff at the end. What the frak happened, Ti West?

The lead characters, Claire (Sara Paxton) and Luke (Pat Healy) are employees at a hotel, that is about to close. Luke runs a website about ghost hauntings while Claire is also a ghost haunting enthusiast. A former actress, Leanne (Kelly McGillis) checks into the hotel. Additionally, one older man checks in and specifically requests a room on the third floor (which no longer has any furniture). Sounds are heard. Claire and Luke drink and laugh. Then Luke leaves when Claire suggests using some of their ghost surveillance equipment to investigate the death of Madeline O'Malley, the bride who hung herself in the hotel. After he leaves, the "thrill" the audience has been waiting for literally happens in the last fifteen minutes of the film.

The scare itself was very gothic and slow moving which was reminiscent of The Woman in Black, which I didn't like. The setup was well done, every scene was masterfully shot, the actors did a tremendous job with their material, and the makeup on the ghosts were also fantastic. However, the setup was too long and the payoff was nonexistent. I understand gothic horror; the genre can be slow moving and eerie, which is the atmosphere West created in this picture. What didn't work was lack of back story and the way the picture ended.

I'm most likely alone in my final verdict of this moving picture and that's okay. I had higher hopes for Ti West is all. Perhaps his next work, I'll enjoy more than I did this.