Movies presented in real-time are a sort of rarity. High Noon and Rope jump to the mind immediately, and they’re fantastic, but there are also a handful of films that never got past the concept as pure gimmick. However, it’s always been interesting to guess at what the appeal of taking away the possibility of jumping forward or back in time really is. One obvious trick, is the creation of suspense. A constantly ticking clock that the audience is physically aware of.

That seems to be alive and well for Sundance favorite Silent House which features Sundance favorite Elizabeth Olsen. It comes from Open Water creators Chris Kentis and Laura Lau, and tells the story of a young woman and her father who are stuck inside a home where a noise continues to grow louder and louder. It’s based off the Uruguayan movie from Gustavo Hernandez that Rob was not a big fan of.

Gimmick-based or not, the trailer here is pretty damned limp. It’s composed almost entirely of shots of Olsen breathing heavily and then a poorly shot “thing of some sort” grabbing her? Not grabbing her? Hard to say. Check it out for yourself:

This piece of marketing makes the movie look like it’s composed of nothing but these types of shots. Granted, context is huge for creating tension, but there’s got to be something more to the story than running, being in the dark, and being possibly grabbed by something that’s impossible to see. Or, maybe Olsen is good enough to pull something like that off. Who knows.

As for this, it’s fairly unimpressive. Hopefully the movie, which hits March 9, will prove to be better.

What say you?


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