Customer Review

25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CHECKMATE, March 30, 2002
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There is more psychological suspense in this thriller than even Hannibal could contribute. Jodie Foster plays Meg Altman, a recently divorced woman searching for a home in a wealthier area of Manhattan. She and daughter Sarah decide on a beautiful multi-level apartment that seems to have a rather unusual lay-out. The seriously intellectual Meg quickly notices that there seems to be square footage missing from the home. One room seems smaller than it should.
How interesting...Meg is right. Behind a secret wall lies the infamous "Panic Room", designed it seems, to withstand (and I am partially joking here) an atomic bomb explosion. The Room is entirely self-sufficient, able to operate and sustain life independently from the outside world. Everything needed to survive is packaged neatly behind the heavy steel doors (think War Games). In fact, the presence of the panic room is so omnious and claustrophobic, it becomes an acting character itself.
How lucky then, are Sarah and mother Meg when a group of burglers, headed by Burnham, (Whitaker)...break into the home in search of a cache of money supposedly hidden in the panic room. And how unlucky are the two women when it comes to our realisation that Burnham used to be a designer and architect of "panic rooms" himself. He is confident that he can break into the room, using his knowledge of a panic room's inherent design.
The real game becomes a slow evolution from -Can they escape?- and -Will they get in?-, cat and mouse style, to who is most strategic. Burnham may seem to have the upper hand, but Meg is quick-witted and familiar with her own home. She plays her cards well and it is exciting to see her instinctual skills come to life.
As the trailers of "The Panic Room" now entice you with more and more scenes, take them seriously with their new motto: bring a friend with you to see "The Panic Room", because you will need to hold on to someone. Great advice. I saw this movie alone and "The Panic Room" nearly gave me a panic attack!
Five stars for edge-of-your-seat action, suspense, fantasic performances, and the last minute additon of Jodie Foster to play Meg. I really don't think Nicole Kidman has the muscle or strength to pull of the physical requirements of a movie like this (She had to bow out due to an injury). Bravo Jodie on surfacing to the limelight again to make another spectacular film! I believe this is her first film since "The King and I". She proves even a Hollywood Mommy can kick [behind] in a physically demanding role. I am already impatient waiting for her next move in the film world. This movie is fabulous and could be a great date flick...especially since you will feel it necessary to grab hold of someone during the intense scenes. Enjoy. I have no doubt you will.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 27, 2011 12:34:50 PM PDT
R. Donahue says:
Hey everybody you better have a TV Gardin to delete the foul lanuage because thers pleny of it but there will be a problem thuogh you might not hear any other relative conversation left in the movie

Posted on Dec 31, 2013 9:46:23 AM PST
Very great review. My only critique would be that the property Meg obtains isn't a multi-level apartment, but a three story Brownstone.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 15, 2014 5:02:47 PM PDT
The only plot flaw - the police would have checked the phone line.
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