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Resident, The


Stars: Hilary Swank, jeffrey Dean Morgan, Lee Pace, Christopher Lee, Aunjanue Ellis

Director: Antti J Jokinen

Psycho in a high-rise flat and without the shower scene (though star Hilary Swank is spied on in her bath). She plays an ER surgeon whose frenetic work seems normal by comparison with what's about to overtake her in her new apartment: overlooking the river, it seems a snip at $3800 a month.

And the landlord, played at first with winning natural charm by Morgan, couldn't be more friendly. Too friendly perhaps...especially as Dr Hilary is missing her cheating ex (Pace).

Actually, the screenplay reveals the landlord as a good ol' psycho in the Norman Bates tradition far too early for the film's good, and Morgan is regrettably forced to drop his mask of amiability for conventional, forehead-sweating Peeping Tom work on Swank in various stages of undress.

The star, who's also executive producer, should have known better. Her first venture into horror, The Reaping, was equally unrewarding and should have put her off this kind of thing for good: the dialogue isn't great, the suspense patchy, and the hackneyed cat-and-mouse finale something we've seen (not that the photography allows us to see all that much) 100 times before - and considerably jumpier on some occasions. And wouldn't the heroine have had a tough time at the end convincing police that she hadn't just murdered everyone on the premises?

David Quinlan

USA 2010. UK Distributor: Icon (Paramount/Hammer). Colour by FotoKem.
91 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 0, Swearing 1.

Review date: 07 Mar 2011