A family relocates from the city to a dilapidated house in the country that was once a grand estate. As they begin to renovate the place they discover their new home harbors secrets, conceals a horrific past, and may not be free of the former inhabitants completely.
On the day that a serial killer that he helped put away is supposed to be executed, a noted forensic psychologist and college professor receives a call informing him that he has 88 minutes left to live.
A grief-stricken mother takes on the LAPD to her own detriment when it stubbornly tries to pass off an obvious impostor as her missing child, while also refusing to give up hope that she will find him one day.
Wanting to escape city life for the countryside, New Yorkers Cooper Tilson (Quaid), his wife Leah (Stone) and their two children move into a dilapidated old mansion still filled with the possessions of the previous family. Turning it into their dream house soon becomes a living nightmare when the previous owner (Dorff) shows up, and a series of terrifying incidents lead them on a spine-tingling search for clues to the estate's dark and lurid past... Written by
OK we've all seen this type of film before, family leave problems and life in the city for a new start in the country only to find far greater and real problems than those they left behind.
Unfortunately it's just not done particularly well in this movie. It starts well and gives the impression it will lead into some kind of haunted mansion movie once the family arrive at their new home. However, what happens is far less exciting.
Quaid gives another solid but unremarkable performance, Dorff is passable but his character never seems as threatening as he should be, Lewis plays the kind of role she seems to fit like a glove. The one thing I realised from this film is Sharon Stone has no impact or presence on the screen at all, I mean she had an impact on me when I was 15 and first saw Basic Instinct, but hey. She is one of the few actresses I would actually advise to only accept films with nudity scenes involved.
The direction is only apt, you feel there is meant to be some kind of attraction or sexual tension between Dorff's and Stone's character but whether due to the fault of the Director or actors it does not work at all. It is also at times very predictable, which is not a good factor for a thriller.
The film does have it's redeeming features, it does at least keep you interested enough to follow through to the climax just to see what happens. It is one though you will not be revisiting soon again.
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