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Review: 14 delirious minutes can’t save a trip to The Resort

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Released on digital and on-demand on the 30th of April, The Resort is written and directed by Taylor Chien (G.S.I.: Ghost Services International) and stars Bianca Haase (Hot Tub Time Machine 2), Brock O’Hurn (Tyler Perry’s Boo 2! A Madea Halloween), Michael Vlamis (Roswell, New Mexico) and Michelle Randolph (A Snow White Christmas).

Lex (Haase) is a writer specialising in the paranormal whose latest book focuses on an abandoned hotel on the Hawaiian island of Kilahuna supposedly haunted by ’The Half-Face Girl’ who was strangled with her own skipping rope by tourists many years ago. As a birthday treat, her friends: Chris (O’Hurn), a muscley metalhead nice guy that fancies her; Bree (Randolph), a vapid Instagram airhead; and Sam (Vlamis), a perma-drunk sex beast douche bro, surprise her with a day trip to Kilahuna to do some first-hand research.

There’s only one boat to and from the island a week, so the gang end up only having six hours on the ground to get in, research Lex’s book and get out. Unfortunately, for Lex and her book (and us), they all decide to stop and get sidetracked or squabble over nothing millions of times along the way, meaning Lex has like an hour in the hotel to do her research and “we” don’t get to the haunted hotel until halfway through the film.

Not that anything happens until literally the last fourteen minutes anyway. The Resort is a supernatural horror movie where someone remembered on the last day of shooting that they hadn’t filmed any of the scary stuff yet. That final 14 is deliriously bonkers, has some cool and gross physical effects and is worth two stars on its own – but the preceding hour will have already drained your IQ and patience absolutely dry.

The dialogue is clunky and the delivery is worse, the actually great vines-strangled hotel location is totally wasted, the non-stop arguments are dull and tiresome, there are weird cuts and basic stuff like breaking of the 180-degree rule that makes visual orientation confusing, the ghost isn’t scary, and the framing device relies on the lone survivor not telling the cop her friends are dead until hours after their interview has started. That’s just wasting police – and our – time.

The Resort is released on digital and on-demand on the 30th of April.

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