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DVD Review

DVD cover

The Resident


Starring: Hilary Swank, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Christopher Lee
Icon Home Entertainment
RRP: £15.99
Certificate: 15
Available 04 July 2011

A young woman attempting to pick her life up after a less than acrimonious split with her boyfriend, is looking for a new apartment. She comes across one barely finished, but in a prime location and at a very reasonable price. The owner appears to be a perfect gentleman, but appearances can be deceiving. Very soon, she begins to get the impression that something is seriously amiss - particularly when she invariably wakes up in the morning feeling tired and unwell. As if that isn’t enough, she has a number of unsettling encounters with the landlord’s sinister elderly father. To convince herself she isn’t paranoid, she has a camera system installed. But she remains in imminent peril...

As I opinioned when reviewing Let Me In, news of another outing from Hammer Films is genuinely cause for celebration. The company has a legendary reputation. The Resident has the huge added selling point of starring, alongside Hilary Swain and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, veteran actor Christopher Lee. Although Lee has been at pains to distance himself from his horror icon status over the years (for heaven sakes, WHY?), this is a coming home of sorts - and he proves quite beyond doubt, despite his advanced age, that he still packs a chilling punch.

Nevertheless, after tearing down the drapes and stripping off the wallpaper, this film is simply a stalker thriller, based in an apartment building. I have to say that this has been done a thousand times now; Pacific Heights, John Carpenter’s Someone’s Watching Me, Panic Room, and many in between. In terms of originality... well, it isn’t. However, it is competently plotted and well-structured, and even tense in all the right places. It’s just that it’s predictable and, consequently, the spark of enjoyment flickers and dies pretty early on. Simple ideas are often the best, but there is a limit.

Let’s see something more original next time, Hammer, it’s what we - and you - deserve.


Ty Power

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