We’ve been keeping an eye on The Disappointments Room ever since it got picked up last year, so we’re thrilled to see Relativity Media release the film’s first official trailer, above. The horror thriller, starring Kate Beckinsale, is slated to premier in mere weeks, on September 9.
While The Disappointments Room may suffer from a strange name and banal premise, its team has horror fans hoping that it will breathe new life — or death — into the genre. Disturbia director D. J. Caruso directed and co-wrote the picture, and lead actress Kate Beckinsale (Underworld, Van Helsing) is a horror veteran. This new trailer could promise just what the genre needs: an inventive film that reshapes its past tropes into something new.
The trailer is fairly standard, as far as horror goes. A family moves into a new house, and the mother starts obsessing over a room that wasn’t on the floor plan, leading her to madness. The film’s official synopsis is as follows:
“The psychological thriller follows a woman (Beckinsale) who moves into a new house with her 5-year-old son only to discover a secret room within the attic where unimaginable horrors are accidentally unlocked.”
Though so far the film seems like standard horror fodder, if any modern screenwriter could be innovative enough to revamp the bloody genre, Disappointment Room‘s Wentworth Miller is perhaps the strongest contender. You may recognize his name from his impressive acting resume, which boasts roles like the lead in Prison Break or Captain Cold in The Flash. If you’re not familiar with his screenwriting, that’s probably because he’s only ever penned one other screenplay: Miller is the mastermind behind Stoker, the deliciously dark 2013 Sundance family thriller/drama directed by Park Chan-wook and starring Nicole Kidman and Mia Wasikowska. The screenplay was so eerie, in fact, that it made Miller the runner-up for Fangoria’s 2013 Chainsaw Award for Best Screenplay.
It’s certainly promising that this is the first writing project Miller has taken on since Stoker. Judging by the trailer, it looks like the film’s premise is right in his wheelhouse, too. Most notably, at one point protagonist Dana’s son tells her, “Don’t get sick again, Mommy.” The shot of her son is immediately followed by a shot of Dana gazing hollowly into a series of her own reflections. This striking moment in the trailer recalls the mental and emotional complexities of Miller’s two female lead characters in Stoker. He is excellent at writing unhinged women, and perhaps The Disappointments Room has provided him with another golden opportunity to do so.
Still, it’s unclear what distinguishes The Disappointments Room from all other household horror, even after viewing the trailer. We get no real sense of who the film’s antagonist is — the room? The house? Dana’s own mind? Either way, it’s hard not to scoff at a horror trailer that opens with a family moving into a new house. It’s sort of like someone telling you they’ve found the next revolutionary romantic comedy, and then showing you a clip of a gorgeous woman charmingly falling down. If the Disappointments Room team does produce something fresh from this premise, it will be all the more impressive. And if they don’t, we’re all going to have to hear the title tossed around for the same tired wordplay.
The Disappointments Room hits theatres September 9.
Source: Relativity Media
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