When a terrified family flees a desolate southern New Zealand farmhouse, two cynical scientists and a young psychic are sent to investigate their claims of a haunting. There they encounter a powerful spirit that will protect the house’s secrets at all costs.
Genre : Horror
Country : New Zealand
Jed Brophy : Liam
Jeffrey Thomas : Scott
Laura Petersen : Holly
Director : Jason Stutter
“I would love to capture something conclusive..
To prove the existence of the paranormal.
Yeah, well, just be careful what you wish for.”
If it was the intention to show how boring the study of paranormal phenomena is, you can safely say that “The Dead room” is a successful film. You never watched a horror before? Well, this is the right movie to start with then. Nothing happens in it so to speak. And when something happens (exactly at 3 o’clock in the middle of the night) it certainly won’t scare you to death. You could call it Horror for dummies. Ghosthunting isn’t really a fascinating profession. You can compare it a bit with a birdwatcher. You’re sitting on your strategic spot and wait until you can observe something. Waiting is the message. Waiting as in the waiting room of the doctor. Fortunately, the entity that runs amok in this New Zealand cottage, owns a well-functioning watch. So it makes an appearance punctually.
When a family pack their bags and leave because there are unexplained phenomena occurring in their home, three researchers arrive to sort it out in a scientific way on behalf of the insurance company. To be honest, I would be terrified if they would force me to live in this dilapidated hovel. The team of would-be Ghostbusters consists of Scott (Jeffrey Thomas), Liam (Jed Brophy) and Holly (Laura Petersen). Scott is a vexing cynic who wants to explain everything scientifically. When inexplicable facts happen, it’s always the wind, according to him. A door opens and chandeliers sway back and forth … probably a gap in the wall which causes a draft. The house shakes on its foundation … probably a gust of wind. Furniture moving … yep that damn wind again. Liam is the tech geek who ecstatically places his motion-detecting cameras and infrared sensors everywhere. However, he’s the first one who wants to leave the place as soon as possible. And Corry is a psychic who feels the presence of supernatural abnormalities. It’s also handy to have her around since she’s a kind of living thermometer.
The horror “Paranormal Activity” was a huge success. You can hardly deny that. Personally, I didn’t think it was that big of a deal and therefore I’ve avoided the successors (I’m not a big fan of commercial exploitation). The most annoying side effect are the countless imitations that make use of this success but lack substance. Most of them simply suck. The same applies to “The Dead Room“. The first hour looks reasonable. Even though there’s not much going on and you have to be patient and wait just like our three researchers. The only things you can witness in the beginning are the way they install themselves, how they go through room after room in search of ghosts and make small talk. The moment things start to happen, you’ll be treated to the well-known phenomena such as moving furniture, slamming doors and swinging chandeliers. The use of such dull phenomena doesn’t guarantee a successful paranormal horror however.
The denouement was substandard and downright ridiculous. The mood changed completely and this “Paranormal Activity” clone transformed into a third-rate horror. The denouement came so unexpectedly and took me completely by surprise. It felt as if they made it up at the last moment. All I could mumble was “Damn, that’s it?”. However, all praises for those three daredevils because although there were some life-threatening and quite frightening situations, they still went to bed hassle free and willingly. As if nothing was going on. Probably they’ve accepted that it really was the wind that caused it all. Honestly, reality shows shown on television are more frightening to me than this bland movie.