Haunter director Vincenzo Natali recently returned to his
lone location horror origins with the trippy Joe Hill adaptation In The Tall
Grass, but the cult helmer cut his teeth with this 1997 effort which strips
back all the unnecessary backstory and complex lore of so many genre flicks to
produce a terrifying, claustrophobic nightmare of a film which borrows bits of
everything from George Lucas’ debut THX 1138 to the trippy metaphysical sci-fi Stalker.
Make no mistake, though—there’s no introspective philosophical navel-gazing to be found here, as any character who pauses to think for a moment is likely to be diced by a moving room in a scene so unforgettably gruesome that both 13 Ghosts and Resident Evil soon saw fit to rip it off. The flick sees a handful of characters awaken in the titular cubic room, with the mismatched group soon moving from one identically sized trap into another in search of an exit. Oh, and did we mention that they’re messily offed one-by-one as each room claims another life?
Don’t go into this one expecting answers or relief from the mounting tension, but if seeing social bonds and mental integrity gradually deteriorating under immense pressure is your thing, by all means enjoy this cinematic panic attack.