Thursday, September 13, 2007

Can I Get Any Other Movies In Room 1408?

Ah, the approach of fall, and crisp, chilly evenings. It's my favorite time of year. And with fall comes Halloween, and with Halloween, HORROR MOVIES. HORROR! HORROR!!!!

The late 9:00pm schedule is truly crazy this week at the LaGrange. I only had two choices:


From what I could ascertain, Waitress does not contain any overt, intentional moments of horror, so that was out. It's been a long time since I've seen a good old-fashioned horror movie, and from the look of it, 1408 looked to be a crappy old-fashioned one. Still, old-fashioned.

So, I checked into the John Cusack-laden 1408 (check out the movie poster's shitty graphic design! Tres magnifique!):

I have now seen movies in all four theaters of the LaGrange! Tonight's showing was in Theater 3, which is apparently the "musical" theater. Theater 3 is exactly like Theater 4, except for the fact that the artwork that adorns the sides of the theater consists of badly rendered record albums and musical notes, rather than badly-drawn eagles and soldiers.

I got to the theater with some minutes to spare. As I sat there reading a Chicago Reader snagged from the lobby, I realized they were playing Abbey Road, which was quite the unexpected pleasant experience, although "Get Back" was rudely interrupted to make way for a preview of Captivity. From its trailer, it appeared to be another entry in the torture-porn genre that looks improbably shittier than Hostel II.

The director's name popped out at me during the trailer -- Roland Joffé. He's responsible for movies reportedly liked by some friends of mine -- The Mission, The Killing Fields, etc. Looking up the movie's entry on the IMDB, I see that the film was written by Larry Cohen, who has done a lot of interesting work (It's Alive, Maniac Cop, Q). I don't know, maybe I'll see it, but it looked horrifically bad.

Boy, it's taking me a while to roll around to talking about 1408, idn't it?

Okay, I'll get on with it. First, some positive things. I like that the title of this movie is a number, with no words. Now just because I say this, doesn't I mean I like the movie title 300. Because I don't. I don't like that movie title. Sheesh, I'm fickle.

Second good thing: When Cusack is first in the super-duper-haunted Room 1408 of the Dolphin Hotel, there is some nice suspense when you are waiting for something extraordinary to happen.

Alright, now you know everything good about the movie.

Samuel Jackson phones in a performance as the manager of the Dolphin. I used to be so excited to see him in smaller film parts early in his career. Hell, I remember being really impressed by his performance in the crappy National Lampoon movie Loaded Weapon 1. Could the thrill be gone? Could it?

The film is pretty stinky. 1408 is essentially that one scene in The Shining where Jack Nicholson goes to Room 237 to see what the hubbub is all about. The only differences between that scene from The Shining and this movie is that 1408 doesn't have a hot, wet young naked lady, and it doesn't have a creepy, wet old naked lady, and it goes on for about an hour and half longer than the Room 237 scene. Did you know both movies were based on the work of Steven King? You did? Oh, I'm sorry, then. I'm wasting your time.



jin said...

Bummer...and I had high hopes for that one.

Your post!
Your pain!
Was not in vain!

For you saved me a Netflix choice!!

Yay Splotchy!

dguzman said...

Consider your post a public service announcement.

And that Francoise Hardy is still yummy.

Slave to the dogs said...

Spot on review. It was good for about 1/2 hour.

Waitress, on the other hand, was phenomenal. I'm not a Kerri Russell fan but I'm pulling for an acting Oscar nod for her.

Splotchy said...

Alright, alright, if Waitress is still playing at the LaGrange next week, I'll see it.