The Door (2014)
I had first gotten wind of The Door from a tweet on the Fangoria feed. It piqued my interest, and when I was at Horror-Rama 2014, I was pleasantly surprised to find a copy promoted by its distributor Black Fawn Films. If you are looking for some interesting psychological horror fare, The Door is a good bet.
Owen is freshly unemployed (I can relate-erk!) and really strapped for cash. After using his head and saving a Japanese business man from a brutal robbery and beating, he is rewarded by becoming an employee for the business man. His job? To watch a door in a large deserted warehouse, 5 nights a week for $500 a night, ensuring that it never opens. Weird, but seemingly easy, Owen takes on the task with more than a little curiosity. His night is disrupted by an unexpected delivery and a visit from his tipsy friends that leads to a chaos, psychological terror and destruction that they will never forget.
What this film does is build tension really well. You begin to question everyone’s motives, and as the madness takes hold of each character, theories get quashed again and again. There were inklings of romantic tension as well as some possible betrayal that made the storyline interesting, but those inklings were slippery at best. A couple of really tidy story arcs, however, brought some cleverly thought out closure and made up for that. The performances were solid, drawing you in enough to want to shake some sense into each member of this sinister Scooby gang until they ran for their lives.
The look of the film was really successful. The art department and cinematographer managed to maintain a large amount of colour within the dark tone and look of the production. The lighting, or lack thereof, was very strategic and forced the viewer’s focus to created suspense, and coupled with minimalistic sets, really conveyed a starkness and desperation that made any type of terror experienced all the more intense as the audience searched alongside the characters for an antagonist. Add the great scoring and sound, and you have a compelling low-budget, indie horror film.
With a decent pace and some great, tense performances, writer and director Patrick McBrearty leaves the viewer wanting a sequel to The Door. Check it out if you are a fan of psychological horror, because it’s a great addition to our Canadian indie horror roster.