Runtime: 80 minutes
Release Date: April 8, 2016
Director: Jason Sutter
Similar to The Amityville Horror, The Dead Room deals with a haunted house that was so terrifying it forced a family to take up and leave in the middle of the night. In the hopes of finding out what actually happened, three investigators arrive and decide to spend a few days filming the house and looking for signs of ghosts.
Liam is the lead investigator and the one who most doubts the family's stories. After investigating dozens of other cases, he's heard it all and is incredibly cynical. Many of the things they said remind him of things he heard before. Scott is his right hand man and equally doubtful. He even reminds Liam of cases they worked on in the past that people faked. Also along for the ride is Holly who apparently really is psychic. She finds their stories sad and wonders if they ever found any real proof of the paranormal.
On their first day there, they find nothing in the way of evidence. Holly can't sense any presences in the home, nothing shows up on their cameras, and their other feeds detect nothing. Though they do catch some movement on one camera in the middle of the night, Scott convinces them that it was just the wind. They later capture a rocking chair moving on its own, and Holly sees a shadowy figure that no one else can see. In the hopes of finding more evidence, they decide to spend more time there, which causes the paranormal activity to worsen. As furniture flies through the air and the spirit chases them through the house, they must decide if capturing evidence is as important as their own lives.
The Dead Room had a few things going for it, but most notably, the characters. Liam is the type of character who we need more of in horror films. There are so many movies like this that feature characters dead set on the idea that ghosts exist and willing to go overboard to prove it. Liam is much more mellow and pretty much a skeptic. Even when faced with real evidence, he's willing to find other explanations for what he saw. Holly was fairly interesting too, especially when she actually began detecting the presence, and Scott at least kept things entertaining.
If you think I liked the film because I liked the characters, think again. I put it on Netflix the other day to have something to watch while waiting for a food delivery and kept thinking about fast forwarding. It's a slow movie, and not the type of slow burn that I usually like. So much doesn't happening in the first half that you start wondering if there's an actual ghost or if this is one of those movies that ends with someone living in the basement. It was just too slow for me.
The end to The Dead Room was really good and had a nice twist. I just wish that some of those action sequences occurred early on. By the time we learn what's really going on, I was ready to turn it off. The Dead Room just didn't do it for me.