Writer: Mark L Smith (Screenplay)
Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Luke Wilson, Frank Whaley, Ethan Embry, Scott Anderson
Plot: A young married couple becomes stranded at an isolated motel and finds hidden video cameras in their room. They realize that unless they escape, they’ll be the next victims of a snuff film
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Tense Thriller
Story: Vacancy starts as Amy (Beckinsale) and David (Wilson) travelling cross-country, we see early on their relationship has been tested before learning the truth about what has happened the loss of their child. The two find themselves lost in the middle of nowhere with car broken down. With no other options the two spend the night in a motel run by Mason (Whaley).
The night for Amy & David is only just beginning as they find out they are in the real danger as they discover snuff tapes taken from the room and now they find themselves being the next targets of the killers. The two have to uses their brains to make it out of the situation alive by outsmarting the killers.
Vacancy really bottles down to one of the simplest of all the horror genres. Put two characters in an isolated location with nowhere to run against a group of killers which all works for the genre. Having the organised crime being used shows that the killers know what they are doing and careful plan their kills. Saying this I find it extremely annoying that we have what would be consider the couple somehow outsmarting the experienced killers. The build-up leaves us in a non-stop position which works for us as the audience throughout the film without being too believable.
Kate Beckinsale: Amy Fox is the wife of the couple, she is struggling after the death of their child having to take a cocktail of pills just to get to sleep. She has become distant towards David but now has to turn to him to save her. Kate isn’t as strong as we are used to in this role.
Luke Wilson: David Fox is the husband who is trying to keep his marriage together after the death of their child. He is putting in a big effort to save their marriage but seems to being coming up short every time. He does everything he can to make sure she is safe during the events of the film. Luke is solid in this role in a genre we haven’t seen him in before.
Frank Whaley: Mason is the hotel manager who has been running a snuff film racket, he offers his guests a certain room only to have his crew kill them off. Frank makes for a creepy character in the film.
Support Cast: Vacancy has a supporting cast that only includes the fellow killers or victims.
Director Review: Nimrod Antal – Nimrod does a solid job directing this by keeping us on edge from start to finish.
Horror: Vacancy has good horror elements with two people trying to escape human killers.
Thriller: Vacancy does keep us on edge as the film is set over one night.
Settings: Vacancy keeps the couple in one location stuck in the motel area for one night with nowhere to run too.
Special Effects: Vacancy has good effects when needed but would rather give us the tension.
Suggestion: Vacancy is on for all the horror fans to enjoy. (Horror Fans Watch)
Best Part: Tension building.
Worst Part: One couple brings down the whole ring.
Chances of Tears: No
Chances of Sequel: Yes
Post Credits Scene: No
Oscar Chances: No
Budget: $19 Million
Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes
Tagline: Once you’ve checked in… The terror begins.
Overall: Horror that is easy to watch that is filled with tension.