Kollegiet (Room 205) (Denmark) (V)

There’s nothing I hate more than a bad ghost movie. From Denmark comes ROOM 205, your typical supernatural horror film filled with plot holes and cheap scares.

Wanting to start a fresh, Katrine moves from the province into a dormitory in Copenhagen and enrolls at the University. But when she crosses conniving Sanne by getting together with Sanne’s ex, all hell breaks loose. Sanne and her friends try to bully Katrine out of the dormitory. They frighten her with an old myth surrounding the ghost of a former resident. Yet the myth very soon becomes a reality. By accident, Katrine sets the ghost free, who then starts a terrifyingly gruesome attack on the dormitory’s residents. Only Katrine knows the fate of the remaining residents if she doesn’t stop the actions of the ghost. However, no one believes Katrine’s story and they accuse her of the series of mysterious murders. She seeks help in the former resident Rolf. While the residents continue to die around them, Katrine and Rolf embark on a desperate struggle to stop the ghost before it kills those that are left.

ROOM 205 isn’t daring nor is it original and takes us to all too familiar places. We have a girl who moves into a new room where paranormal things begin to happen. She’s the only one experiencing them and everyone else thinks she’s crazy. Students begin to die around her and the audience doesn’t know why. Eventually the ghost decides it is time to explain everything to the victim of the haunting and literally just shows her everything. The entire movie is summed up in literally 30-seconds, which is completely insulting to the viewer. And the reason why this spirit is killing? Oh just wait until you see this hilariously ludicrous explanation. Even worse is the resolution to the spook, who is just trying to serve justice – instead of solving the crime the lead needs to trap her back in the mirror in which she came out of. Resolved? Nope. A flippin’ jip if you ask this humble reviewer.

Aside from the horrendous screenplay, the director deserves some major props. His use of the camera does create tension and suspense when needed, and he does know how to tell a story with the camera and minimal exposition; it’s just too bad he didn’t have a script to work with. In addition, the sound design and score are remarkable. If it weren’t for the SAW-esque flash cuts in the editing, there might have been some genuine scary moments ion the film. The make-up and FX work was 50-50 at best; during some scenes the ghost looked incredible while in others (the finale) she looked terrible.

Seriously, someone needs to write a memo to aspiring filmmakers, filling them in on the rules and regulations to making a good film. ROOM 205 had so much potential but was wasted by budget constraints and a poorly executed story. If anything this film is a showcase of Martin Barnewitz’s talents and nothing more. I wouldn’t be surprised if this film doesn’t even find it’s way to DVD here in the States. Yes, it’s that bland.

Official Score