Escape Room Parent Guide
Derivative, violent, and dull, this dreadful movie will have viewers longing to escape from the theater.
Parent Movie Review
Following up on the latest social trend of paying to be locked in confined spaces, Escape Room follows six strangers as they work their way through the most complicated and dangerous escape room ever built. They all believe they are competing for a ten thousand dollar prize but learn that the only prize is to get out alive. The characters are forced to work together to avoid traps and hazards and as they spend more time together, they find that they all have something in common…
Compared to other films in the horror/thriller genre, Escape Room is positively tame, but this does not mean that parents will not be concerned about content issues. This movie contains serious injuries and deaths, but they’re typically not shown in detail which is likely why this movie squeaked through at a PG-13 rating. (Without too much effort, it could have been a very gory “R”. ) Violence aside, profanity is almost solely confined to a scatological term repeated over and over again, with a handful of mild profanities and terms of deity sprinkled on top for good measure. Despite earning a “C+” grade for drugs and alcohol, when placed in context, the film’s advice for both seems to be “avoid at all costs”. Characters using these substances either find themselves seriously injured or surrounded by corpses.
The only redeeming feature of the picture is the performance of Canadian actress Taylor Russell, who plays physics genius Zoey. While hampered by limited writing and material, Russell manages to bring some emotion to the screen, and is certainly the character audiences will relate to most. The remaining cast turn in passable performances, but don’t manage to transcend the clichéd script. Frankly, this is a bargain-bin version of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None which manages many of the same plot elements with much more suspense and grace. Being an Agatha Christie novel, the characters aren’t much more detailed, but their stories and the setting are far more compelling.
Ultimately, the only room I was interested in escaping was the theater. Despite the fact that the premise is moderately compelling, and one or two of the characters weren’t completely insufferable, this movie falls flat. The plot is absurd and the characters are by and large one dimensional cutouts. This is one of those unfortunate movies that is simply boring. It lacks the “so-bad-its-good” quality that turns some flops into cult classics, but it doesn’t have enough good content to stand on its own. If it weren’t frequently very loud, this would be a fabulous movie to nap in.Directed by Adam Robitel. Starring Deborah Ann Woll, Taylor Russell, and Tyler Labine . Running time: 100 minutes. Theatrical release January 4, 2019. Updated January 4, 2019
Rating & Content Info
Why is Escape Room rated PG-13? Escape Room is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for terror/perilous action, violence, some suggestive material and language
Violence: An individual’s leg is fractured. A character falls through a crack in the ice and drowns. A dead woman is briefly shown suspended in mid-air. An individual is shown injured in the aftermath of an explosion. An person falls 15 stories to their death. An individual is defibrillated to artificially accelerate their heart rate and dies as a result. A character is beaten to death in a fight. A character is garroted from behind. An individual is shot at, stabbed, and hit across the head with a large glass object.
Sexual Content: No sexual content or nudity is shown. There are a handful of crude anatomical references or double entendres, but these are fairly mild.
Profanity: There are approximately 70 uses of coarse language in this movie, including six sexual terms, and one sexual expletive.
Alcohol / Drug Use: A character is implied to be an alcoholic but is not shown drinking. They are shown severely intoxicated once with extremely dire consequences. A character is shown smoking cigarettes habitually. Two individuals are unwittingly dosed with some kind of hallucinogen.
Page last updated January 4, 2019
Escape Room Parents' GuideThe characters in this film believe they are competing for a one million dollar prize – just for being the first one out of an escape room. How do you react when something seems too good to be true?
Read books about Escape Room
Many Agatha Christie novels handle similar situations: And Then There Were None, Murder on the Orient Express, and Death on the Nile all feature people trapped with killers.
Related home video titles:
The 1965 adaptation of And Then There Were None, titled Ten Little Indians, takes some liberties with the plot of the novel, but is ultimately fairly well done.
Another film based on an Agatha Christie whodunnit, Murder on the Orient Express, features a trainload of people trapped with a killer. The 1974 version of this story also features an all-star cast and a more faithful script.