Held ★★

Do struggling couples really still take getaways to try and fix their relationship? On one hand, I can see the draw. Getting away from the mundane routines and reconnecting with nothing but each other to focus on seems appealing, but on the other hand that doesn't address the real problem that was affecting normal life for the couple in the first place.

Anyway, this is a movie where a couple does that and it goes badly. They get locked into a smart home of sorts by a creepy ominous voice that tells them they must obey or they'll be hurt. What unfolds is a story clearly influenced by films like "Saw", "The Strangers", and even "Get Out". It's all a big commentary on patriarchal power and it's mildly interesting at times, though it takes a while to ever get interesting. The movie mostly just features two actors and neither are particularly good. Awbrey's script is better than her performance. The former isn't anything special but despite a surprise that I found to be somewhat eye-roll worthy, the ultimately forgettable story did hold my attention through to its conclusion.

With better, slicker direction, a little more intensity and genuine scariness throughout, and more seasoned and talented actors, this could have been a pretty darn good thriller instead of something that is average in its best moments and implausible to a fault and boring in its worst.

2021 Awards Cycle Ranked

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