Six strangers receive a mysterious invite to tackle an escape room, one that offers a cash prize if the game can be completed. However, once it commences, the players learn that there’s also a penalty should you fail!
Look, we’ll say outright that there were probably many things wrong with this film. The character development was slight and what plot there was has been done to death.
It was fun as all hell. Seriously, we never expected to enjoy Escape Room (2019) as much as we did. It’s basically SAW-lite with a bit of Hostel and Cube chucked in – if that combination appeals to you, give it a shot. It’s exactly the kind of film you’d expect it to be. Crucially though, the film knows this.
Escape Room (2019) is very aware that it isn’t going to win any awards and, as a result, swings for the fences. In recent memory, I can’t recall a more ridiculous film or one that actually made me laugh at points, so convoluted were the twists and turns of this story. But it’s 110% successful because of that. It wholeheartedly embraces what it is and runs with it. There’s no pretence that it’s a deep film, it doesn’t desperately try to be scary and it certainly doesn’t possess lofty goals. The only thing that Escape Room (2019) promises is 90 mins of pure fun, just as long as you’re willing to disengage.
And that last sentence is quite key here. As I mentioned at the outset, it probably isn’t a conventionally good film. We’re not provided with characters to root for and the entire story doesn’t make a lick of sense. If you’re looking for a well-structured experience, you’re probably out of luck.
Then there’s the silliness. Within the first 5 mins of our characters playing the game, it is made clear that this is very much a high concept, ‘wouldn’t it be cool if’ style attraction rather than something you could expect to stroll into tomorrow. Far be it for me to spoil anything here, suffice to say that an escape room like this just wouldn’t exist in the real world. The ending does try and explain how a game like we see in the movie could possibly run and the idea might be somewhat feasible as a general concept but the specifics are far too outlandish to accept. Our favourite area was the ‘Downtown’ section – you’ll know it when you see (hear) it! It’s actually a pretty cool setup for a room (provided that the threat of death was removed obviously!) and it was fun watching the characters navigate this particular space. But again, it’s something that would look more at home in a sci-fi movie!
So I think your enjoyment of the film will very much hinge on what you’re expecting from it. If you’re looking for something that you can kick back with and let wash over you, this is a solid bet. If you desire a movie that portrays escape rooms in a slightly more realistic light, you should check out one of the other identically named films out there (reviews of both coming soon).
Escape Room (2019) Review
Movie title: Escape Room (2019)
Movie description: Six strangers find themselves in a maze of deadly mystery rooms, and must use their wits to survive.
Director(s): Adam Robitel
Actor(s): Taylor Russell, Logan Miller, Jay Ellis, Tyler Labine, Deborah Ann Woll
We can't fault this one. It's unoriginal to the nth degree but who cares when it's such a ride?