Mischa Barton “stars” as a recent college graduate who is the youngest in a family of demolition experts. Her first solo assignment for the family company is to plan the demolition of an old apartment complex in the middle of nowhere, due to be destroyed because the “government” has “ordered it.” The building was designed by an eccentric architect, who made it a habit of burying people alive in the foundations of his creations in order to increase structural rigidity. Something about an ancient Egyptian myth, I think.
WALLED IN also features Cameron Bright (Nicole Kidman’s tiny love interest in BIRTH, who, by the way, isn’t getting any less creepy), and Debra Kara Unger (who isn’t getting any less plastically-looking). Although both of them outshine Barton by quite a bit, this is like saying Brett Ratner is a better director than Donald Petrie.
Speaking of directors, all signs point to Paquet-Brenner being French because: (1) this is a horror film, (2) it is over stylized, and (3) a dog is killed. Please do not confuse the unnecessary stylistic flourishes with directorial competence, however. This movie features some of the worst hand-held camerawork in the history of feature films. In fact, every aspect of the cinematography, from the lighting to the framing, can be described as haphazard, at best.
A movie named WALLED IN should probably feature scenes of people being trapped inside…uh…walls. But Paquet-Brenner does not subscribe to such conventionalities. Other than an entirely unexplained opening credit sequence featuring exactly that, the closest thing we get to experience being trapped between four walls is our heroine falling down into some sort of giant well/silo structure. There is enough room down there to play a game of flag football, though, so to call it being “walled in” is a bit of a stretch.
WALLED IN is the kind of movie where a character screams “I won’t let you kill me!” just so the other character can say something like, “I’m not going to kill you, you are going to kill me!” Nothing anyone says or does is remotely believable, and nothing about its production qualities indicate an effort on behalf of anyone involved in its making. Mr. Paquet-Brenner, if you want, the next time you are feeling this lazy invite me over and I’ll bring some good horror movies we can watch from the comfort of your couch. $7.5 million (WALLED IN’s budget) can buy a ridiculous amount of beer, and maybe you’ll learn something.