We all need our privacy to function as human beings, no matter if you need to go for a walk, read a book, just to clear your mind for a while. We need time to see our family members, or friends of course, but it is important to think about yourself as well. When i need some time alone, i take a moment to watch films that my wife does not like. I can just relax with a nice cup of coffee, and watch independent horror films in different categories. But what if you suddenly were locked in, for an unknown reason, and you don´t know why someone would take away your freedom. That is exactly what happened to the character Paul Conroy ( really well played by actor Ryan Reynolds ), who is a U.S. truck driver working in Iraq, who wakes up buried alive underground, in the really well made drama thriller Buried. This is a claustrophobic film that may not have a big budget, but is really effective. How do you react when you wake up underground, knowing that no one can hear you, and no one knows where you are? Ryan Reynolds gives one of his better acting performances in his career, and i actually think that this was the perfect role for him to prove that he wanted to move on from comedies, and do something more serious. Director Rodrigo Cortés ( who directed the well made black comedy Concusante ) knows how to tell a story with a claustrophobic feeling, using mostly one location for the whole film, inside the coffin. You can tell that Rodrigo really wanted the audience to feel what it would be like, to be in the situation of the main character Paul. Definetey worth checking out on HBO Max, Amazon Prime, or any other streaming site. You may have heard of The Daily Wire, the American conservative news website and media company, well known for people like political commentator Ben Shapiro. In autumn of 2020, The Daily Wire distributed the action thriller Run Hide Fight from director Kyle Rankin. I reviewed this film on DVD in May of 2021, and i actually enjoyed it. Especially actress Isabel May as the character Zoe Bell, who tries to survive a school massacre. Defintely worth picking up on DVD or Blu Ray, if you love films like Die Hard. A few months ago i heard that The Daily Wire have made their first original film called Shut In, that seemed to be in the claustrophobic thriller genre. Since i am a big fan of thrillers, i simply had to check this title out. Is this film just as good as Run Hide Fight, or is it even better than i expected?
Jessica ( Rainey Qualley ) is a former drug addict, trying to make a fresh start for her two kids. Running out of money, she needs to continue her journey to Texas to try and find a new job, and a new home. Unfortunately, her ex-boyfriend Rob ( Jake Hororwitz ) and his friend Sammy ( Vincent Gallo ) find her location. Jessica is worried about the safety of her children, and as a conflict starts between Jessica and Rob, he thrown her in to the pantry room, and nail her shut in. Jessica is locked in, with 2 drug addicts in the house close to her children. There is no option, she has to find a way out.
There is no way i can compare Shut In and Buried, since they are very different films. But i will say this, Shut In have definetely managed to capture the feeling of how you may feel, being locked up inside a room. It is very hard to say how everyone would react, since we are all different. One thing is clear though, i do believe we would all panic. Shut In is not a pure claustrophobic thriller though like Buried, but have other psychological elements as well. In the case of Jessica, she is forced to try and make her daughter take care of herself, and her baby brother, since she can´t get out. Imagine being a mother locked in, and can´t be sure her kids will have the help they need? Issues such as these help the plot of Shut In become more interesting than the ordinary thrillers we usually see. So how is the acting? Overall i am quite impressed. Actress Rainey Qualley ( who some of you might recognize from the independent thriller Ultrasound, worth checking out ) deliver a great performance as the young mother Jessica. I do believe that Rainey manage to capture a realistic performance how a mother would react, if you were in her situation. The best acting performance though in this film is without a doubt from legendary actor Vincent Gallo ( who is absolutely brilliant in one of my personal favourite films, known as Buffalo´ 66 ) as the drug addict character Sammy. The thing that makes Vincent Gallo such an amazing actor, is the way he uses his body language, and his own unique way to deliver dialogue. I hope we get to see him more in the future, since we definetely need actors of his quality level. Director D.J. Caruso is most known for his action films such as Eagle Eye, I Am Number Four and XXX: The Return Of Cage. I think this is definetely one of his better films in recent years, since he really tried to do something completely different. It is a well made film with great looking scenes, and even if most scenes are just in this big house, it actually works thanks to clever film making. Shut In feels like a throwback to 90´s thrillers, when this genre was still powerful enough to leave an impact. It may not be a future classic, but if you are looking for a solid thriller, i would definetely recommend this one. Hopefully we will have a DVD and Blu Ray of this film, but you can check this film out on VOD. If there is one thing this film Shut In teaches us, is that no matter what it takes to survive, you have to look at all options.