This film was good. I say that to start as I wasn’t expecting it to be good. I was expecting a horrid little horror full of torture and blood. What I got, instead, was a tongue-in-cheek thriller that was variously funny, suspenseful, engaging and – well – good. Whether or not Director Nimrod Antal planned that or not is another matter. Vacancy stars Luke Wilson and Kate Beckinsale as David and Amy Fox, a bickering couple who find themselves overnighting at a strange motel in the middle of nowhere when their car breaks down. When David turns on the TV in their motel room to watch a video, he realizes to his horror that the snuff/slasher video he is watching was filmed in the very room he’s in. What ensures is a game of cat and mouse as David and Amy try to escape the motel with creepy frontdesk man, Mason (played brilliantly by Frank Whaley) in pursuit. Vacancy never takes itself too seriously, and is more fright and jump then slash and gore, and that’s what makes it work. My rating 8 out of 10.
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End
Well, here we have part three of this adventure. How writers Elliot and Rossio are able to squeeze yet one more story out of a storyline that was essentially done after movie one is beyond me. In this latest (and please Lord, final) installment of the Jack Sparrow adventure directed by Gore Verbinski, the usual crew of pirates and such (Depp, Bloom, Rush and Knightley) must face the combined forces of Davey Jones and Lord Cutler Beckett in a battle to end all battles (yeah, right). After releasing Sparrow from Davey Jone’s Locker, the nine Pirate Lords meet to decide whether or not to release Calypso (who has been played ever-so-well by Naomie Harris) who may then aid their cause. All manner of this and that occurs as the Pirates gather and then all’s well that ends well … or gawd, I hope so. The first movie of this installment is still the best but bully on Disney for continuing to draw dollars out of our pockets …. that studio is the ultimate pirate … and there’s the rub on this franchise. My rating 5 out of 10.