The Innkeepers (2011) starring Sara Paxton, Pat Healy, Alison Bartlett, Jake Ryan, Kelly McGillis, Lena Dunham, Brenda Cooney directed by Ti West Movie Review

The Innkeepers (2011)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Sara Paxton in The Innkeepers (2011)

The Ghost Pedlar

The once grand Yankee Pedlar Inn is about to close and just Claire (Sara Paxton) and Luke (Pat Healy) are left to manage the place and its solitary booking Leanne Rease-Jones (Kelly McGillis) a former actress who has become a medium. Both Luke and Claire are interested in the Inn's spooky past with it supposedly being haunted and strange things begin to happen to Claire who finds her asthma constantly triggered by the spooky sightings. The question is are the spooky goings on really paranormal manifestations or just manifestations of Claire's mind as she is desperate to experience the ghosts of the hotel before it is too late.

That last sentence of the synopsis for "The Innkeepers" is the key to this movie as everything which goes on in this movie is to me built around us wondering whether Claire's encounters are manifestations brought on purely by her own desperation to have a paranormal encounter. Now that is an interesting concept and combined with the style of "The Innkeepers" which is of the old fright variety where sudden noises and movements provide much of the horror should be right up my street. Unfortunately for some reason "The Innkeepers" didn't get me gripped and whilst not terrible I found more often than not it failing to keep me engaged.

Pat Healy in The Innkeepers (2011)

Part of the trouble is are trio of characters as it all feels incredibly awkward with none of the actors gelling. Now in fairness they are a diverse bunch, Claire is bubbly and enthusiastic, Luke is geeky and looks a little like Simon Pegg whilst Leanne is full of herself and quite mean. It makes it incredibly hard to warm to any of the characters and so fails to keep you involved especially when during the build up a lot of what is being said seems utterly pointless and mind numbing. The discussions between Claire and Luke are so dull that the looks of boredom on the actors faces makes me wonder whether it was actual boredom.

It is a shame that "The Innkeepers" couldn't have given us better characters and involve us more as when it comes to creepy locations and frights it is okay and as I said that whole aspect of doubt when it comes to Claire's encounters is interesting. The one thing which I guess "The Innkeepers" has going for it is that some of the movie was shot in the real Yankee Pedlar Inn in Torrington, Connecticut and so anyone who has stayed there might get an extra kick out of it.

What this all boils down to is that "The Innkeepers" is in the end only an okay horror movie with a decent idea and some nice moments of classic horror with Ti West working the classic horror well. But unfortunately we are given characters that are incredibly hard to warm to and so it becomes a battle to feel any involvement with them especially during the build up where we get lots of irrelevant scenes which seem to be filling time.