(director: Deon Taylor; screenwriter: David Loughery; cinematographer: Daniel Pearl; editor: Melissa Kent; music: Geoff Zanelli; cast: Michael Ealy (Scott Russell), Meagan Good (Annie Russell), Dennis Quaid (Charlie Peck), Joseph Sikora (Mike), Alvina August (Rachel); Runtime: 101; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers: Robert F. Smith, David Guillod, David Loughery; Sony Pictures Entertainment; 2019)
“An inert thriller.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
An inert thriller by director Deon Taylor (“Traffik”). It’s flatly written by David Loughery. It’s about a former homeowner’s insane refusal to leave a property he no longer owns.
A well-off millennial African-American couple, the advertising man Scott (Michael Ealy) and the housewife Annie (Meagan Good) Russell, from nearby San Francisco, for $3.5 million purchase a spacious secluded luxury estate, with a gorgeous rustic dream cottage, in the exclusive Napa Valley, which is California’s noted wine country. The couple is experiencing some bumps in their marriage and hope this move will help them get close again.
A major problem arises when the gun-toting white man previous owner, the widower Charles Peck (Dennis Quaid, in a vacuous hammy role), refuses to vacate and relocate to Florida to live with his daughters as arranged during the house closing. The creepy guy doesn’t openly threaten the couple but stays in the area to mow their lawn without being asked to and pops up unexpectedly on several occasions to provide home maintenance. He also might have run hubby off the road with his speeding truck when he was jogging.
The contrived and clichéd script never gets going and comes with an unsatisfying predictable outcome, but what really makes it such a bad film is how absurd it is.
REVIEWED ON 8/1/2019